Colorado Springs Utilities is joining the energy movement away from old, coal-fired technology.

The city-owned utility is planning to shut down one of the two remaining turbines at its Martin Drake Power Plant, located in that city's Downtown.

Some members of the Colorado Springs utility board expect that to happen as soon as next year. The final turbine is expected to be shut down in 2024.

A spokesman said the city's decision earlier this year to move toward more renewable energy and battery storage systems is accelerating the schedule for decommissioning the old power plant.

"As long as the economics make sense, the utility intends to replace the older power with renewables," a spokesman said Monday.

The Martin Drake plant was scheduled for shutdown in 2035, but changes in the energy industry toward renewable power have sped up the planning process.

According to news reports, the utility is planning to add two new solar-power projects, plus battery storage, to its power network. It also operates the R.W. Nixon Power Plant south of the city.

Some members of the utility board want to get both remaining units at the Drake plant shut down in the next few years.

The widespread shift toward renewable power was signaled earlier this year by Xcel Energy, which serves 1.3 million customers in Colorado. Xcel won permission from the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to shut down two coal-powered units at the Comanche Station, south of Pueblo, and largely replaced that power with renewables and battery storage.

Xcel announced earlier this month it intends to get 100 percent of its power from renewables by 2050.

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