targeted by coalition for carbon dioxide emissions
Susan E. Peterson
Minneapolis Star Tribune
The Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies
(CERES), which represents environmental, investor and
advocacy groups, said Tuesday that it has filed proxy
resolutions related to global warming against five utilities,
including Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy Inc.
The Boston-based coalition claims the utilities, which
it dubs the "filthy five," are the nation's five biggest
utility emitters of carbon dioxide, which has been linked
to global warming. Others on the list are American Electric
Power of Columbus, Ohio; Southern Co. of Atlanta; Cinergy
Corp. of Cincinnati, and TXU Corp. of Dallas.
CERES spokeswoman Nicole St. Clair said the group plans
a news conference on Thursday and won't disclose until
then how it determined the target companies nor what the
resolutions are seeking.
Xcel spokesman Ed Legge said the company has received
a number of shareholder proxy proposals but can't
comment on specific resolutions until it sends out its
annual proxy statements to shareholders in mid-April.
"We'll match our emissions record with any utility
in the country," Legge said. "Our emissions rate per megawatt
hour is nowhere near the top of the list, compared with
A previous CERES report, issued in March, listed Xcel
as the fifth-largest U.S. utility in terms of megawatts
of electricity generated during 2000. The report listed
Xcel as No. 4 in total emissions of carbon dioxide for
2000, but ranked it 39th in terms of carbon dioxide emissions
per megawatt hour.
Because the largest utilities logically would have the
most total emissions, the rate per megawatt hour is the
"true barometer of what a utility has done to reduce emissions,"
Legge said. He also noted that Xcel has committed to spend
$1 billion during the next several years to convert
two Twin Cities coal-fired power plants to natural gas,
lowering carbon dioxide and other emissions substantially,
and to upgrade a third coal plant to significantly reduce
emissions. It also has made similar improvements at its
Denver - area plants, he said.