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AES boosts Holy Cross’s 100% renewable energy goal with two solar projects

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April 23, 2021, 9:18 am

Holy Cross Energy, the local electric co-op, released the following press release on its partnership with AES Corporation to increase its solar production and storage capacity with projects in Silt and Parachute:

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, COLO., April 19, 2021 — The AES Corporation (NYSE: AES) today announced it signed agreements with Holy Cross Energy (HCE) to help meet Holy Cross Energy’s 100 percent renewable energy goal by 2030 outlined in its 100X30 plan. Through the agreements, AES will develop two projects that will collectively add 20 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy capacity and 40 megawatt-hours (MWh) of battery storage in the Towns of Parachute and Silt, Colorado, located west of AES’ office in Louisville, Colorado.

“Projects like these will allow HCE to attain our 100X30 clean energy goals while keeping power supply costs low,” said Steve Beuning, HCE VP, Power Supply & Programs. “We are pleased to be partnering together with AES to develop reliable and resilient energy resources locally that will benefit all HCE members.”

“We see incredible value in these projects and are proud to partner with HCE and support their commitment to a clean energy future,” said Woody Rubin, AES Clean Energy Chief Development Officer. “HCE’s customers will benefit from green, reliable energy, and the local communities will also benefit from approximately $3.5 million in combined tax revenue over the contracted life of the projects. We look forward to working together with HCE to realize the full potential of solar and battery storage through these projects.”

The projects, High Mesa Solar in the Town of Parachute and Peace Bear Ranch Solar in the Town of Silt, will each provide 10 MW of solar energy and 20 MWh of battery storage and will support HCE in sustainably and affordably serving local customers in its retail service territory.

The 40 MWh of battery storage will allow HCE to shift electricity production from the solar panels into evening hours when customer demand is often highest. The development of the Peace Bear Ranch Solar project is contingent on the results of engineering studies currently being performed by Xcel Energy to assess overall grid impacts. Project construction is planned to begin in late-2021, and the projects are expected to be fully operational by the end of 2022, subject to Garfield County Land Use permitting approvals.

Collectively, the projects will generate enough carbon-free electricity to serve 5% of HCE’s electrical load under 20-year power purchase agreements (PPA).

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