Bennet, Hickenlooper Welcome $35 Million for Energy Storage Project at Pueblo’s Retiring Comanche Coal Plant

Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Funding Also Includes $9 Million for Energy Storage Research at NREL in Golden

Denver — Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper welcomed $44 million from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to support a long duration energy storage (LDES) project in Pueblo, Colorado, and two research projects at Colorado’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). In Pueblo, Xcel Energy, in partnership with Form Energy, will receive $35 million to build a new LDES system at the retiring Comanche coal-fired power plant. In Golden, Colorado, NREL will receive $9 million for two lab research projects to install and test LDES projects. This funding was made available through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and is part of a $325 investment from DOE to support LDES projects in 15 states.

“Energy communities like Pueblo have helped power the nation for decades, and supporting them must be central to our transition to a clean energy economy,” said Bennet. “This funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will help Colorado continue to lead in deploying innovative, clean energy solutions while investing in Pueblo’s local economy and workers to help ensure they can thrive into the future.”

“Flexible energy storage is a new, innovative system that’s less expensive, more durable, and requires fewer critical minerals, ensuring we have a reliable grid system even when the sun isn’t shining or the wind isn’t blowing,” said Hickenlooper. “These investments from our Bipartisan Infrastructure Law are a big deal and the City of Pueblo and NREL are leading the way!” 

Bennet has worked to ensure energy communities are central to Colorado’s clean energy transition. In 2022, Bennet introduced the National Energy Community Transition Act to support economic development and diversification in former energy communities that face significant declines in tax revenue. As a member of the Senate Finance Committee, Bennet also helped write and champion the clean energy tax package in the Inflation Reduction Act, which included bonus tax credits for clean energy projects located in energy communities. In 2021, Bennet introduced the American Energy Worker Opportunity Act to provide resources and training for energy workers as the country transitions to a clean energy economy.