Feb 7, 2011 8:35 AM by Bea Karnes
DENVER (AP)-Electricity bills for Xcel Energy customers in Colorado have risen about 21 percent in six years and are expected to rise another 20 percent over the next six as the utility adds renewable energy, builds transmission lines and passes fuel costs through to consumers.
The average monthly residential bill for Xcel customers in Colorado is now above $68.
The Denver Post reported Sunday the increase has been twice the inflation rate.
Minneapolis-based Xcel has been upgrading existing power plants and building new ones. At the same time, Colorado has been requiring utilities to use more renewable energy, which Xcel says is more expensive than building coal-fired plants.
The Colorado Public Utility Commission says Xcel's electric rates in Colorado remain lower than the national average.
Xcel has 1.4 million Colorado customers.