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Xcel Energy rolls out most ambitious plan to-date

Xcel Energy (XEL) announced its goal to deliver 100% carbon-free electricity to its customers in the eight states that it serves by 2050. The company is looking to lower carbon emissions by 80% from its 2005 levels by 2030. These are the most ambitious plans rolled out thus far in the electric power industry.

Xcel had previously set a goal to reduce carbon emissions by 60% by 2030 and as part of the efforts to reach this target, the company managed to reduce emissions by 35% since 2005. Xcel believes the goal set for 2030 is achievable with the current renewable energy resources and technologies but as far as the 100% goal is concerned, more work is required.

The technologies needed to produce carbon-free electricity are not currently available. Xcel’s long-term plans include the development of these advanced technologies in a cost-effective manner. These plans could include carbon capture technology as well as nuclear power. The company, in cooperation with the government, will try to research and develop various options to reach its goals.

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For its most recent quarter, Xcel saw a slight increase in total operating revenues while earnings saw a slight decline. The company narrowed its EPS guidance range for 2018 to $2.45 to $2.49 from the prior range of $2.41 to $2.51.

Last month, Xcel announced that it was acquiring the Mankato Energy Center from Southern Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company (SO). This acquisition is expected to help Xcel in its efforts to transition to cleaner energy sources and reduce its dependence on coal.

Xcel’s shares have gained over 9.8% so far this year and looking at the past three months, the stock has climbed 8.9%.


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