In addition, Xcel will consider acquiring up to 600 MW from solar thermal generation with storage capability or natural gas backup.

Under Colorado Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) rules, all forms of electric generation greater than 30 megawatts – both fossil fuels and renewables – can be bid, although this RFP restricts coal-fired bids to those from facilities that capture and sequester at least 50% of their carbon dioxide emissions.

“Our request today marks the next important chapter in meeting the future energy needs of Colorado, and it will have significant emphasis on ensuring that we add those generation sources that are in keeping with Xcel Energy’s environmental leadership strategy and the state’s New Energy Economy,” said Tim Taylor, president and CEO for Public Service Co. of Colorado, an Xcel Energy company.

Xcel will sponsor a pre-bid conference on January 28, 2008 in Denver, with parties interested in offering power supply proposals to the company through this RFP. Proposals are due on April 10, 2009. Xcel expects to offer self-build proposals to compete in the overall process.

The company expects to complete the resource evaluation process by the fall of 2009. An independent evaluator selected by the CPUC will perform a parallel evaluation of proposals.

One megawatt of generation in Colorado typically serves the needs of around 750 homes. Xcel currently has about 7,700 MW of generation capacity available on its system, either owned or secured through power-purchase agreements.