Changes coming to Weston Power Plant

WESTON, Wis. (WAOW) — WPS’ parent company, the WEC Energy Group, recently put out its climate goals, and plenty inside that report will impact Central Wisconsin.

While the company says it’s already cut carbon dioxide emissions by half since 2005, its goal is to reach net-zero carbon by 2050, and to do that, two of those generators will be shut down.

It’s part of an expensive plan that the company says is an important adjustment for the state’s environment; what it describes as efficiency, sustainability, and growth, or ESG.

“What we’re doing with those emissions goals is implementing our ESG progress plan, and that is investing nearly $2 billion in new renewable energy facilities here in the state of Wisconsin,” said Matt Cullen, Senior Communication Specialist for WPS.

That includes the proposed Koshkonong Solar Energy Center in Dane County. If that site goes through, WPS says it would be able to generate enough electricity to make up what is lost when the Weston generators stop.

The price tag for that project: almost $650 million. But the company says that ultimately, it’s spending money so customers can save money.

“We expect that the steps that we’re taking by implementing our emissions goals…will save our customers more than $1 billion over the next 20 years,” Cullen said.

And they plan on doing it mostly through solar energy, since prices have been going down as a result of higher efficiency.

One big question that the company has not yet answered is what will happen to the jobs that will go away when the Weston generators shut down. News 9 is still working to learn more, and we’ll have you covered, when we know.