Xcel Energy: Wikis


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Xcel Energy Inc.
Type Public (NYSE: XEL)
Founded 1909
Headquarters Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
Key people Richard C. Kelly, Chairman, CEO, and President
Industry Electric Utilities
Revenue US$11.2 Billion (FY 2008)[1]
Operating income US$1.42 Billion (FY 2008)[1]
Net income US$646 Million (FY 2008)[1]
Total assets US$25.0 Billion (FY 2008) [2]
Employees 11,223 (2008)[3]
Website http://www.xcelenergy.com

Xcel Energy, Inc. (NYSEXEL) is a public utility company based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, serving customers in Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin. Primary services are electricity and natural gas. Subsidiaries include Northern States Power Company, Public Service Company of Colorado, and Southwestern Public Service Co.


Generation Portfolio

Electricity Operations Customers 3.4 million

     Major Generating Facilities  
         14 Coal Plants 7,505 Mw
         25 Natural Gas Plants 6,533 Mw 
          2 Nuclear Plants 1,668 Mw 
         27 Hydro Plants   511 Mw 
          4 Oil Plants    16  Mw 
          3 Refuse-derived (RDF) Plants     68 Mw 
          2 Wind  126 MW
Electric Transmission Lines 84,625 
Distribution Lines 191,723 

Financial (as of 12/31/2008) Electricity Revenue $8.7 billion Natural Gas Revenue $2.4 billion Total Operating Revenue $11.2 billion

Net Income $646 million Total Assets $25 billion


Coal Power

One example: Sherburne County, Becker, Minnesota (Sherco) Plant

Fuel Source: Low-sulfur Western coal from mines in Montana and Wyoming. The plant burns 30,000 tons of coal every day (three trainloads) and more than 9 million tons a year. A rotary car dumper, which literally turns a rail coal car upside down, unloads one car every three minutes and an entire train in just over six hours. Source http://xcelenergy.com/Company/About_Energy_and_Rates/Power%20Generation/MinnesotaPlants/Pages/SherburneCountyPlant.aspx

Wind Power

According to the Annual Wind Industry Report for year-end 2008 published by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), Xcel Energy is the largest investor-owned wind power provider.[4] As of 2009, Xcel Energy had 2936 megawatts of wind power generating capacity within its 8-state service territory, and 13 percent of the utility's generating portfolio comes from renewable resources. Xcel Energy customers in Colorado, Minnesota, New Mexico and Wisconsin can purchase as much wind power as they want through a program known as "Windsource," one of the nation's leading voluntary wind power program according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

Solar Power

Xcel Energy is fifth in the nation for solar power capacity according to the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA)[5] and manages a fast-growing program in Colorado called Solar*Rewards that offers rebates to residential and business customers for installing on-site solar systems.[6] Applications for the program increased significantly in 2008, and the program is expanding to New Mexico.[7] Xcel Energy has announced plans to acquire up to 600 megawatts of concentrating solar power, with storage capability(SEPA).[8] Having the ability to store the solar power will enable the company to use the energy when it needs it most.

Hydro Power

Xcel Energy generates over 500 megawatts of hydroelectric power from 27 plants in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Colorado. This accounts for more than four percent of their electricity generation. They also purchases large amounts of hydro-generated electricity from Manitoba Hydro.[9]


Biomass electricity comes from organic fuel sources. Xcel Energy has contracts for about 110 megawatts of electricity from biomass generators. Two in northern Minnesota are fueled by forest harvest residue such as treetops and limbs. A third facility, brought on line in 2007 in western Minnesota, generates power using turkey litter. They also generate our own biomass electricity.[7]

Xcel Energy's Bay Front plant in Ashland, Wis., is a three-unit generating station that has become a model for the creative use of fuels: coal, waste wood, railroad ties, discarded tires, natural gas and petroleum coke. Two of the three Bay Front operating units already use biomass as their primary fuel. Following more than a year of study and planning, Xcel Energy recently proposed a plan to install biomass gasification technology at Bay Front.[7]

Xcel Energy has three power plants—two in Minnesota and one in Wisconsin—that produce about 67 megawatts of electricity from a fuel derived from municipal solid waste or garbage, called refuse derived fuel (RDF).

The waste-to-energy facilities not only produce electricity; they play an important role in using waste that would otherwise end up in landfills. All of the waste-to-energy facilities have upgraded air quality control systems to meet stringent environmental emission regulations.[7] The Wisconsin waste-to-energy plant burns wood waste in combination with RDF.

Nuclear Power

Xcel Energy owns and operates two nuclear power plants, Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant near Monticello, Minnesota, and Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant near Red Wing, Minnesota and stores the spent fuel from these nuclear plants on site in independent spent fuel storage installations. (ISFSIs).[10]

Xcel is seeking to extend the operating licenses for the Prairie Island plants for 20 years to 2034, increasing the number of spent fuel casks at the Prairie Island ISFSI to 64 casks.[10] In November 2009 the license was granted by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission and the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission is expected to rule on Xcel's application in 2010. [11]


Xcel Energy operates 17,335 miles of transmission lines throughout its 8-state service territory, with major control centers in Minneapolis, Minnesota; Golden, Colorado; and Amarillo, Texas.[7]

Xcel Energy's transmission system is operated on a non-discriminatory basis under the open access requirements of the federal government. This means that all wholesale buyers and sellers of electricity can use the transmission system under the same terms and conditions used to serve Xcel Energy’s own retail customers.[7]

Xcel Energy utilizes a transmission systems with lines that carry 115,000 volts, 230,000 volts, and 345,000 volts. Xcel also has a 500,000 volt transmission line that runs from Winnipeg, Manitoba in Canada to Chisago County just north of St. Paul, Minnesota.[7]


Xcel Energy, with headquarters in Minneapolis, Minn. is a major U.S. electric and natural gas utility. The company provides energy to more than 3.3 million electric customers and 1.8 million natural gas customers in 8 states: Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin.

Xcel Energy was built on three companies –Minneapolis-based Northern States Power Co. (NSP), Denver-based Public Service Company of Colorado (PSCo) and Amarillo-based Southwestern Public Service (SPS).[7]

Northern States Power

The story of NSP begins with Thomas Edison’s protégé Henry Marison Byllesby, who in 1902 established H.M. Byllesby and Co. The Chicago-based conglomerate owned steamships, streetcars and utility companies from West Virginia to California. In 1909 Byllesby came to Stillwater, Minn., and established Consumers Power Co. The organization had 19 employees, 29 miles of electric lines serving 771 customers, and 11 miles of gas mains serving 484 customers.

Generating and selling electricity originally was considered a business sideline. Dusk-to-midnight electricity service – for lighting only – was common in many small communities. When the electric iron was introduced, however, the demand for daytime power generation was so great it created load problems. Also, manufacturers were continually finding new uses for electricity. Newspapers gave this description of a 1911 Minneapolis electric products trade show: “There are electric toys, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, bread toasts, show shines, pumps for automobiles, and many other labor-saving devices. It seems that anything is possible with electricity.”

A few weeks before the tradeshow opened, the city’s main generating plant at St. Anthony Falls burned down. Although power was quickly restored, people were reminded of what life was like before electricity. In future years, Byllesby would acquire additional properties and reorganize the company. In 1916 the company’s name changed to Northern States Power Co.

Public Service Company of Colorado

The Colorado Power Co. and its subsidiary Cheyenne Light, Fuel & Power in Wyoming came under the PSCo name on Sept. 3, 1924. PSCo became an independent and autonomous operation in November 1943 when it served 80 percent of Colorado’s gas and electricity needs. As demand for energy continued to grow, so did PSCo. Eventually the company merged with Southwestern Public Service Co. (SPS), based in Amarillo, Texas, to form New Century Energies (NCE) in 1995.[12]

Southwestern Public Service Co.

Southwestern Public Service Co. (SPS) dates its origins to 1904 and the Pecos Valley in New Mexico when Maynard Gunsell received an electricity franchise for the city of Roswell, N.M., and its 2,000 residents. The financial strain of creating this new enterprise soon overwhelmed him and he sold the franchise to W.H. Gillenwater, who named his utility the Roswell Electric Light Co. He later sold the company to an investment firm in Cleveland, Ohio, which already owned the Roswell Gas Co.

Other information

The company has naming rights for the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, which is the home of the Minnesota Wild professional hockey team, hosted the 2008 Republican National Convention.[13]


  1. ^ a b c XCel Energy's annual income statement via Wikinvest
  2. ^ XCel Energy's annual balance sheet via Wikinvest
  3. ^ Profile for Xcel Energy - Yahoo! Finance
  4. ^ American Wind Energy Association (2009). "Annual Wind Industry Report" (PDF). American Wind Energy Association. p. 12. http://www.awea.org/publications/reports/AWEA-Annual-Wind-Report-2009.pdf. Retrieved 2009-11-22. "For the IOU rankings, Xcel Energy continues to be the leader by a wide margin related to wind power on its system, making it the largest wind-powered utility in our rankings again in 2008, with the other utilities in the top five positions unchanged from last year."  
  5. ^ Solar Electric Power Association (May 2009). "Top Ten Utility Solar Integration Rankings" (PDF). p. 17. http://www.xcelenergy.com/SiteCollectionDocuments/docs/2008SEPARankings.pdf. Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  6. ^ Xcel Energy. "Solar*Rewards". http://www.xcelenergy.com/Colorado/Residential/RenewableEnergy/Solar_Rewards/Pages/home.aspx. Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h [1]
  8. ^ Xcel Energy (2009-04-07). "Xcel Press Release". http://www.xcelenergy.com/Colorado/Company/Newsroom/Pages/NewsRelease2009-04-07-XcelEnergyandSunPowerSignContracttoBuild17-MegawattSolarPhotovoltaicPowerPlantinColorado.aspx. Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  9. ^ Xcel Energy. "Hydroelectric generation". http://www.xcelenergy.com/Colorado/Company/Environment/Renewable%20Energy/Pages/Hydro.aspx. Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  10. ^ a b "Nuclear Power". Xcel Energy. http://www.xcelenergy.com/Minnesota/Company/About_Energy_and_Rates/Power%20Generation/Pages/NuclearPower.aspx.  
  11. ^ Leslie Brooks Suzukamo (2009-11-12). "Xcel Gets Go Sign". St. Paul Pioneer Press. http://www.twincities.com/business/ci_13776382.  
  12. ^ PSCo AND SPS To Combine in Merger of Equals
  13. ^ [2]

External links


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