- Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, a Colorado G&T cooperative that supplies 44 electric cooperatives and public power districts in Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming, contracted for the 76 MW output of Iberdrola Renewables’ Twin Buttes II Wind Project.
- The wind power will provide some backup if the utility cannot secure the half of its coal supply for the Craig Station coal plant from the threatened Colowyo mine. A federal judge ruled in May that the 2007 approval for the mine's expansion was flawed and must be revisited. Mining will be shut down in October if Tri-State’s appeal fails and errors are not corrected.
- Tri-State’s delivered electricity in 2014 was 24% renewables-sourced. Baseload coal provides 59% of the utility’s mix while 2% of its electricity comes from natural gas. The balance is merchant-supplied.
Tri-State obtains 653 MW of the 3-unit, 1,303 MW Craig coal facility. In 2002, units 1 and 2 underwent a $121 million retrofit approved by the Sierra Club to address opacity concerns and particulate matter emissions.
The Twin Buttes wind project is expected to annually provide $270,000 in local tax benefits and $250,000 in landowner lease payments.
Tri-State’s contract with Duke Energy provides the 51 MW output of the Kit Carson Windpower Project. Its contract with Colorado Highlands Wind provides the 91 MW output of the Colorado Highlands Wind project. Its contract with NextEra Energy Resources will begin providing the 150 MW output of the Carousel Wind Farm in 2017.
The Colowyo Mine, which employs 220, was developed in 1978. Over two million tons of coal per year is shipped by train to the Craig facility. Five trains with 50-plus 120-ton railcars make weekly deliveries.