The bill replaces the integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) program, which was repealed in 2019, with a mechanism by which an investor-owned public utility seeking to implement an innovative energy technology project (project) may apply to the public utilities commission (PUC) to acquire resources that demonstrate the use of low- and zero-emission dispatchable resources and other innovative energy technologies such as advanced renewable energy and storage.
In determining whether to grant approval to a public utility seeking to implement a project, the PUC shall consider a number of factors regarding the project, including its economic and technical feasibility, its projected environmental and public safety impacts, and its carbon dioxide emissions rates. The PUC is required to provide an opportunity for public comment and an evidentiary hearing.
A public utility may fully recover, from its retail customers in the state, the costs it incurs in researching, testing, planning, developing, constructing, starting up, and operating the project. The public utility may also recover capital investments made in connection with the project over the useful life of the project. The department of public health and environment, the governor's office of economic development, and the Colorado energy office may assist public utilities in seeking and obtaining support for a project from other federal and state agencies and institutions.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)