Xcel looks toward greener future

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. Clean energy and more jobs will be the top priorities for Xcel Energy in the coming years.

Fred Eggleston, Xcel's area manger for the Western Slope, presented on the company's renewable energy programs to a crowd in Grand Junction Wednesday.

Wind and solar energy are the focus for now and they come at a lower cost to customers than other states, while creating more job opportunities, he said.

"We were asked to do this by the voters and we've been able to put a program together where we're able to do it at a 2% rate impact, lowest rate impact in the whole nation," Eggleston said.

Another Xcel initiative going on right now is Clean Air Clean Jobs.

It's opening up career opportunities all over Colorado including on the Western Slope where the company is putting in air emission controls for a coal plant in Hayden.

"There's two kinds of jobs you get from that," he said. "One is from the extended life of the plant. The other is the construction that goes on for putting these systems in because they're very big."

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