On March 27, 2007, Governor Bill Ritter signed House Bill 1281, which increased Colorado’s previous renewable portfolio standard. Under the new standard, large investor-owned utilities are required to produce 20 percent of their energy from renewable resources by 2020, 4 percent of which must come from solar-electric technologies. HB 1281 requires municipal utilities and rural electric providers to provide 10 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2020. Sources of energy that count toward the standard include solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, and small hydroelectric.




On June 4, 2007, Governor M. Jodi Rell signed House Bill 7432, which expanded the state’s previous renewable portfolio standard. HB 7432 requires that 27 percent of the state’s electricity come from renewable sources by 2020. The law includes standards for three classes of renewables. By 2020, 20 percent of the renewables must be from Class I, 3 percent must be from Class I or II, and 4 percent must be from Class III. Class I sources include solar, wind, new sustainable biomass, landfill gas, fuel cells (using renewable or non-renewable fuels), ocean thermal power, wave or tidal power, low-emission advanced renewable energy conversion technologies, and new run-of-the-river hydropower facilities with a maximum capacity of five megawatts. Class II sources include trash-to-energy facilities, biomass facilities not included in Class I, and certain hydropower facilities. Class III sources include customer-sited combined heat and power systems with a minimum operating efficiency of 50 percent installed at commercial or industrial facilities on or after January 1, 2006; electricity savings from conservation and load management programs that started on or after January 1, 2006; and systems that recover waste heat or pressure from commercial and industrial processes installed on or after April 1, 2007.

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