American Electric Power (AEP) recently released a report outlining the company's strategy for clean energy in the future. The strategy includes new carbon dioxide emission reduction goals and investments in renewable resources and advanced technologies to enhance the efficiency of the power grid.
In the report, AEP outlines a business strategy that will lead to reductions in carbon dioxide emissions from its power plants of 60 percent by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. The company expects to achieve its carbon dioxide emission reductions through a variety of actions, including investments in renewable generation and advanced technologies, investment in transmission and distribution systems, increased use of natural gas generation, and expanded demand response and energy efficiency programs.
"AEP is focused on modernizing the power grid, expanding renewable energy resources and delivering cost-effective, reliable energy to our customers," said Nicholas K. Akins, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer. "Our customers want us to partner with them to provide cleaner energy and new technologies while continuing to provide reliable, affordable energy. Our investors want us to protect their investment in our company, deliver attractive returns and manage climate-related risk. This long-term strategy allows us to do both."
AEP's resource plans include adding 3,065 megawatts (MW) of solar generation and 5,295 MW of wind generation to the portfolio serving its regulated utility customers by 2030. AEP's largest planned renewable energy investment is the $4.5 billion, 2,000-megawatt Wind Catcher Energy Connection project in Oklahoma. If approved, Wind Catcher will be the largest contiguous wind farm in the United States and will deliver nearly 9 million megawatt-hours of low-cost wind energy annually to AEP customers in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas. Wind Catcher approval would accelerate how quickly AEP can add new wind generation to its portfolio.
AEP also is investing in renewable energy in competitive markets. Between 2018 and 2020, the company plans to invest approximately $1.2 billion in contracted renewables and renewables integrated with energy storage.
To enhance the efficiency and resiliency of the energy delivery system, AEP's strategy also includes plans to invest nearly $13 billion over the next three years in its transmission and distribution system.
AEP has factored future carbon regulations into the company's evaluation of generation resource options for many years and will continue to do so. The company already has cut its carbon dioxide emissions by 44 percent since 2000.
For more information, visit www.aep.com.