JurisdictionUnited States
Water-Energy Nexus: Acquisition, Use, and Disposal of Water for Energy and Mineral Development
(Sep 2012)


Randy Rhodes
Xcel Energy, Inc.
Denver, Colorado

RANDY RHODES has been employed by Xcel Energy and its predecessor companies for 28 years. Primary Responsibilities involve managing company water resources as required for reliable electrical generation. Xcel Energy has numerous water rights to provide water supplies to its generation facilities in all major river basins of Colorado, and in the panhandle and west Texas. Challenges include acquiring reliable water resources at the lowest achievable cost to ensure reliable electrical generation in an increasingly competitive market, and dealing with declining ground water levels in Texas. About one-half of Xcel Energy's water supply in Colorado is derived from contractual supplies, which is an increasing trend. He is proud of developing an integrated water supply for Xcel Energy's generating stations in Colorado's South Platte basin, which greatly reduces costs and improves reliability. Previous experience includes a stint with a Denver area consulting firm working in water supply and water rights issues, and working for a petroleum services company involved in drilling and exploration in the northern Rockies. Prior to that, he was a Peace Corps volunteer on the island of Montserrat in the Eastern Caribbean. He has a B.S. in Watershed Science from Utah State University and an M.S. in Earth Resources from Colorado State University, and resides in Denver.

The Water-Energy Nexus: Electricity Generation and Water Considerations

Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation

Sept. 14, 2012

Denver, Colorado

Randy Rhodes Senior Water Resources Analyst

Xcel Energy Overview

• Comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services

• 3.3 million electricity customers, 1.8 million natural gas customers

[Page 8A-2]

Wind Power

• # 1 wind power provider for seven consecutive years (AWEA)

• Wind power is 9 percent of energy provided, growing to 20 percent in 2020

• Wind power has no water requirement

Water for Steam-Electric Generation

• Most water use by evaporation from cooling towers

• Type of fuel (coal, natural gas, nuclear, or refuse) does not change water use

[Page 8A-3]

Xcel Energy...

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