Sunday, December 5, 2021

Long Pueblo Mill Is Turning To Solar Power To Make The World’s “Green Steel”

A steel mill in Pueblo that has been powered by coal during its nearly 140-year existence will now get most of its electricity from solar power.

EVRAZ Rocky Mountain Steel welcomed state and local elected officials, as well as its partners in the 300-MW Bighorn Solar Project, to the site Wednesday to see rows upon rows of solar panels that have long identified with the city. Will promote the going business. Lightsource BP, a London-based developer and manager of worldwide solar projects, said it believes EVRAZ is the first steel mill to be largely powered by solar power.

Kevin Smith, CEO of Lightsource BP, Americas, said, “We really see this project as a game changer in that it really proves that you can take solar power and make it very cost-effective. ” In Denver earlier this year.

The steel mill recycles scrap metal to produce rails and other products. Smith said harnessing solar-generated electricity would make the mill’s products some of the “greenest steel” in the world.

The $285 million project is the result of an agreement between Lightsource BP, the owner, and Xcel Energy-Colorado, which will purchase the power under a long-term power purchase agreement. This agreement will provide EVRAZ with fixed electricity rates till 2041.

EVRAZ, concerned about a hike in its rates, Xcel-Energy said it would close two coal-fired power plants in Pueblo ahead of the plan and considered moving out of Colorado after increasing its use of renewable energy. Was.

The mill employs about 1,000 people and there are plans to add several hundred more as part of a $500 million expansion that is expected to be completed by 2023. Local officials have said that the agreement between Xcel Energy and EVRZ was the culmination of years of effort to ensure it. Lives in Pueblo. The state approved millions of dollars in tax incentive credits.

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