City of Creede looks at grant renewable energy options

CREEDE- Creede City Manager Louis Fineberg spoke with the Creede board of trustees about coming projects and potential grant funding options. Fineberg began by explaining that the board had previously wanted to look into installing a micro-hydro power facility on the Lower Willow Creek flume and that he had some additional information about the potential project.

Fineberg continued to state that the grant deadlines through the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) had changed recently which would afford them more time to complete the application. “As you recall we did receive a grant to do a feasibility study for a micro-hydro generating facility on Willow Creek. The study has indicated that a facility would cost just $600,000 to build and it would produce each year, half of the electricity that the entity of the City of Creede uses by about 200,000 kilowatts.”

Fineberg continued stating that the City of Creede spends about $70,000 on electricity each year and by constructing this facility, it could potentially save the city offices about $35,000 per year. “If we had implemented it all ourselves, it would be a 20 year pay back. Right now, DOLA is looking to fund renewable energy projects at a 75 percent, 25 percent match. So, the city would have to come up with 25 percent and DOLA would provide 75 percent if the application was approved. This makes the pay back on this project less than five years.”

“At some future point, I would like to bring back this discussion to include solar and wind options which could further reduce our electrical spending to zero.”

Fineberg also explained that DOLA has moved their original application deadlines for the Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Fund Grant until December which afforded the city more time to finish the application process and also have the opportunity to apply for the grant again in March for the sewer project that is still in the planning process.

One member of the public asked what kind of noise the generator would produce, to which Fineberg stated “noise pollution would be minimal because the generator would be enclosed.”

The board gave administrative direction to move forward with the grant application process and decided to discuss details of the project at a later meeting because the project manager was not available at the time of the current meeting


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