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PNM proposes more solar

PNM would build 40 megawatts of new solar generation next year under an agreement filed with state regulators Thursday, according to a release from the utility.

PNM said the plan would mean a $79 million investment in green energy and that by 2016, PNM would have enough solar power to serve 40,000 average homes.

“We are pleased with the agreement. We know that solar, in combination with other power sources, can deliver real benefits to our customers,” Pat O’Connell, PNM director of Resource Planning, said in the release.

The Public Regulation Commission staff, the Attorney General’s Office, the N.M Industrial Energy Consumers, Western Resource Advocates and the Coalition for Clean Affordable Energy signed the agreement, which calls for the company to build four 10-megawatt solar centers in 2015.

PNM now has eight operating solar centers plus three more under construction.

The agreement still must be approved by state regulators.

The additional 40 megawatts of solar is part of PNM’s 2015-2016 plan, filed in June, to meet a state requirement that its renewable energy portfolio equal 15 percent of the energy customers need.