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Utility Dive:

Xcel Energy, in its second quarter earnings report on Thursday, said it plans to significantly accelerate decarbonization efforts in its home state of Minnesota and will cut emissions by 85% by 2030.

Xcel is preparing for a major transition, with long-time CEO and chairman Ben Fowke slated to retire in August and turn over the reins to Bob Frenzel, president and chief operating officer. Frenzel will become president and CEO on Aug. 18, the company announced in May. Fowke has served as CEO since 2011, and will serve as executive chair of the company’s board after retirement.

Xcel reported earnings of $0.58 per share, or $311 million for the second quarter, up from $287 million, or $0.54 a share, during the same three-month period a year ago. Higher electric and natural gas margins helped boost revenues, Xcel said in its quarterly earnings release issued on Thursday.

Xcel Energy is pushing ahead with plans to add 10,000 megawatts of renewable energy generation in Minnesota and Colorado, Frenzel, the utility’s incoming CEO, said during an earnings call with investors on Thursday.

Frenzel said he plans to continue to advance Xcel’s transition away from fossil-fuel fired plants to renewable sources of energy, crediting Fowke, the utility’s soon-to-be-retired CEO, with having slashed carbon emissions by 51% in 2020 compared to 2005 levels.

[Scott Voorhis]

More: Xcel plans to roll out 10,000 MW of renewable energy in Minnesota, Colorado by 2030

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