MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Xcel Energy’s investment in clean energy is paying off for the customers and the communities it serves in eight Western and Midwestern states. The company has made significant strides in sustainable energy and plans to expand on it in the future, according to its newly released 2014 Corporate Responsibility Report.
In 2014, 21 percent of the company’s energy supply came from renewable resources, three times what it reported in 2005. Xcel Energy’s efforts in this area will continue as it adds more wind and solar resources, growing renewable energy to an estimated 28 percent by 2020.
“Year after year, Xcel Energy turns in outstanding operational and financial performances, but we are committed to going beyond the fundamentals,” said Ben Fowke, chairman, president and CEO of Xcel Energy. “The path forward relies on working with the communities we serve and delivering the clean, reliable and cost-effective energy solutions they want in a responsible way.”
In the report, Xcel Energy says it has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 22 percent, compared to 2005 when it first began reporting. The company is on track to achieve a 30 percent reduction in CO2 emissions by 2020. It also reports that air emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides are down 60 percent compared to 2005 from the company’s own generating plants.
“Xcel Energy’s significant emission reductions are directly tied to our renewable energy investments, customer efficiency programs and retiring and modernizing our fossil-fuel power plants. We are particularly proud that this strategy has accomplished so much while maintaining affordable energy costs for customers,” said Frank Prager, vice president of policy and federal affairs.
Xcel Energy currently offers customers nearly 150 programs to manage electricity and natural gas use. In 2014, the company’s customers saved 982-gigawatt-hours of electricity, enough to power more than 121,000 average-sized homes for a year, and more than 2.5 times the customer energy savings achieved in 2005. Natural gas customers also benefitted, saving 1.7 million dekatherms of natural gas in 2014. That is enough to fuel more than 20,000 homes for a year.
Xcel Energy’s Corporate Responsibility Report also details its corporate citizenship. The company contributed more than $45 million in 2014 to local communities through energy assistance and economic development support, volunteer efforts and grants.
Other highlights from the company’s 2014 Corporate Responsibility report include:
- About 86,000 customers currently participate in Xcel Energy’s Windsource® program that gives customers the option to buy more renewable energy. Participation has more than doubled since 2005, making it the third largest program of its kind in the country. In addition, the company’s Solar*Rewards® programs have helped more than 25,500 customers in Colorado, Minnesota and New Mexico install solar panels since 2006.
- Xcel Energy continues to be recognized nationally for its leadership in military hiring. It is “Best for Vets,” according to Military Jobs, and Civilian Jobs.com calls it a Most Valuable Employer for Military. G.I. Jobs has recognized the company as a Military Friendly Employer for the last six years. Xcel Energy’s goal is for military veterans to make up 10 percent of its newly hired employees annually.
- Under its avian protection plans, the company has retrofitted more than 2,600 electricity transmission and distribution locations with equipment to protect birds.
Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) is a major U.S. electricity and natural gas company with regulated operations in eight Western and Midwestern states. Xcel Energy provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services to 3.5 million electricity customers and 1.9 million natural gas customers through its regulated operating companies. The company’s headquarters are located in Minneapolis.