Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ritter Says State to Get Grant to Help With Renewable Energy Transformation

Gov. Bill Ritter announced today that the Governor’s Energy Office (GEO) has been selected to receive a $397,700 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to advance renewable energy in Colorado.

GEO will use the grant to develop technical, financial and policy frameworks to expedite the construction of an additional 1,000 megawatts of renewable resource capacity onto the Colorado electricity grid.

“This DOE grant is another important step forward for Colorado’s New Energy Economy,” Ritter said. “It will help us connect Colorado’s abundant solar and wind resources to our transmission grid."

The objectives of the nine-month grant are to prepare a set of concrete policy recommendations that will:

(1) directly address major permitting, siting and environmental barriers to the integration of renewable energy development and transmission expansion;

(2) connect several gigawatts of renewable energy from the 10 Renewable Resource Generation Development Areas identified in a 2007 “mapping” report conducted for the governor’s office and state legislature;

(3) support both regulated and public utilities to expand the current level of planned transmission investments to the Generation Development Areas; and

(4) be replicable in other states to substantially expand and create an aggregated, regional, renewable energy market.

One thousand megawatts of renewable energy will provide enough power to serve 330,000 homes.

The governor's office did not indicate when the federal grant would actually be received by the state.