Re: “Xcel proposes adding more wind power to its system,” May 31 business story.
Mark Jaffe reports that Xcel Energy plans to add an additional 550 megawatts of wind power. It appears that Jaffe forgot to ask “why?”
He should have read his own report of Dec. 23, 2011, for some background on the issue. On that day, Jaffe reported that Xcel asked for a rate hike of $53 million to pay for 300 megawatts of excess generation capacity.
An obvious question is why do we need an additional 550 megawatts of generation? If it costs $53 million to carry 300 megawatts of excess capacity, what will it cost to carry 550 more?
Wind power is backed up with gas-generation capacity. Will rate-payers be responsible for capacity we can’t use, and also for more gas-fueled capacity to back up the new wind resources?
Brian Vande Krol, Westminster
This letter was published in the June 6 edition.
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