Over the past six months we have learned that a local energy utility can reduce our carbon emissions by 60%, increase the percentage of renewables by 40%, all while keeping our rates at parity or lower than those charged by Xcel.
The Citizen Technical Team composed of 30 members versed in finance and renewable energy applied real-world Boulder modeling data using HOMER energy modeling software developed at NREL to determine the financial and technical feasibility of a Boulder muni based on hourly energy loads.
The team determined that Boulder could reduce its CO2 emissions between 50-80% with $300 million start up costs (each year Xcel generates $100 million in revenue from Boulder) with $20 million administrative and legal costs using a 7% bond.
Additionally, the team determined that with Boulder managing its own electric utility we could cut greenhouse gas emissions and increase our use of renewable solar, wind and hydro energy while maintaining rate parity, i.e. offering electricity rates that are the same or lower.
For a more in-depth look at the numbers, please watch the August 22, 2011 public presentation by Ken Regelson and Sam Weaver, two lead members of the technical team, in a debate format against the opposing side. See who you think won!