Alliant Energy announces changes - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Alliant Energy announces changes

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -

Today Interstate Power and Light Company, a subsidiary of Alliant Energy, announced changes to how they'll provide energy in the future.

For starters, they're extending their purchase of power from Iowa's only nuclear power plant, Duane Arnold Energy Center in Palo.

"We went through a process where we actually bid for power and the Duane Arnold Energy Center actually came out as a very cost effective, the best solution for that," said Joel Schmidt, Vice President of Regulatory and Financial Planning for Alliant Energy.  "We continually look out for the best interests of our customers."

They also plan to build a new gas-fired power plant in Marshalltown, scheduled to open in 2017.

Having a new plant will allow the company to generate more power, which means they'll have to purchase less.

"It helps us manage costs because now we have a different fuel source," said Schmidt.  "We have diversity in our system and it allows us to manage costs for our customers better."

While investing in the future will cost the company money, Alliant officials couldn't say whether or not these changes would raise consumer bills in the long-run.

"There will be other factors," said Schmidt.  "Some of the efficiencies we have, what fuel costs are at that point, other things will determine what that ultimate cost is for customers."

They did say that all these changes will continue to keep the lights and air conditioning running across Iowa.

The company also plans to reduce emissions and increase efficiency at their current coal-fired plants.

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