One of Colorado’s largest solar projects moving forward
Pueblo facility will deliver clean, cost-effective energy to EVRAZ North America steel mill
Pueblo, CO – Plans to build one of the state’s largest solar facilities are a step closer to reality as Xcel Energy, EVRAZ North America and Lightsource BP announced today they have reached a long-term agreement to develop a new 240-megawatt solar facility in Pueblo.
Lightsource BP will finance, build, own and operate the Bighorn Solar project and sell all the electricity it generates to Xcel Energy under a long-term power purchase agreement. It will be located on EVRAZ Rocky Mountain Steel property in Pueblo, making it the largest on-site solar facility dedicated to a single customer in the country. This innovative agreement makes possible EVRAZ North America’s planned long-term investment in Colorado, while supporting the goals of Xcel Energy’s partners and community.
“We’re thrilled to partner with EVRAZ North America and Lightsource BP, two companies committed to creating innovative solutions, while developing new solar energy sources within the state,” said Alice Jackson, president of Xcel Energy Colorado. “Working together, we’re benefiting the environment and the local economy by retaining a valued company in southern Colorado.”
“This pioneering partnership with Xcel Energy and Lightsource BP marks a milestone for the development of our new rail mill and will make EVRAZ North America the industry leader in the use of renewable energy to produce the greenest steel and engineered steel products in the world, from rail to rod & bar,” said Skip Herald, president and chief executive officer of EVRAZ North America. “This long-term agreement is key to our investment in Colorado’s new sustainable economy.”
“Xcel Energy and EVRAZ North America have been excellent partners for Lightsource BP and we look forward to our continued collaboration as we bring this significant project online. The project highlights the tremendous potential that Colorado offers for large-scale solar and serves as a creative multi-stakeholder model to meet increasing demand for affordable, clean energy,” commented Kevin Smith, Lightsource BP’s Chief Executive Officer of the Americas. “We’re committed to building on this momentum and replicating this model across the U.S. as we grow our suite of clean energy solutions that boost local economies.”
The partners’ agreement requires final review by the Colorado Public Utilities Commission. It complements the broader Colorado Energy Plan, which will deliver 55% renewable energy to the grid by 2026 and reduce carbon emissions by 60%. The agreement is also part of Xcel Energy’s commitment to collaborate on solutions that benefit customers, communities and local economies.
EVRAZ North America is Xcel Energy’s largest retail electric customer in Colorado and one of Pueblo’s largest employers. The companies agreed to work towards a long-term electricity contract in 2018 that gives the steel mill price certainty through 2041. With its 20-year, fixed rate structure, the project provides EVRAZ North America with predictable electricity prices and allows the mill, which employs about 1,000 workers, to stay in Pueblo.
Lightsource BP and project investors will invest an estimated $250 million into the solar facility. In addition to providing low cost-energy and budget certainty, the project will create about 300 jobs in construction, operations, maintenance and asset management. It will also contribute over $22 million in property tax revenue over the project life, benefitting local schools, street maintenance fire stations, parks and other community public services. The project is expected to go online by the end of 2021.
21 Sep, 2023
Poland: Lightsource bp signs first solar contract with Microsoft
Microsoft and Lightsource bp have entered into a solar power purchase agreement in Poland, the first PPA for either party in the country.
08 Sep, 2023
Lightsource bp awarded prestigious Platinum Award from the Charities Trust
Lightsource bp has achieved the Platinum Payroll Giving Quality Mark Award 2023 for promoting Payroll Giving to the very highest standard.
01 Sep, 2023
Solar power leads the way on affordable electricity
A new IRENA report shows that 86% of renewable electricity cost less than fossil fuel-generated electricity, with solar power leading the way.
31 Aug, 2023
Be the change: August philanthropy update
Read about how we're making a positive difference to the world and our communities.
17 Aug, 2023
Brazil: Lightsource bp volunteers help renovate schools near Complexo Solar de Milagres
Lightsource bp volunteers help renovate schools near Complexo Solar de Milagres
25 Jul, 2023
Lightsource bp ranked #2 utility-scale solar developer in the U.S.
On 2023 Solar Power World Top Solar Developers list
25 Jul, 2023
Lightsource bp welcomes key new hires in the APAC region, strengthening its role as a global solar leader
Global solar leader Lightsource bp is pleased to announce two recent additions to the APAC senior management team. The new members will be key contributors to Lightsource bp’s
24 Jul, 2023
Lightsource bp launches 2022 Sustainability Report
Our latest sustainability Report captures our sustainability strategy, aims and progress at Lightsource bp.
12 Jul, 2023
Solar installation smashes global record for tenth consecutive year
Solar is well and truly on the rise. 239GW of new solar power was installed in 2022, smashing the annual record for the tenth year in a row, according to a new report.
11 Jul, 2023
Discover our new Madrid office: our hub to anchor European solar push
On June 20, we celebrated the inauguration of our new headquarters in Madrid, located in the heart of the Salamanca neighbourhood.