Hydroelectric, Renewables

PacifiCorp halts pursuit of Priest Rapids hydro license

PORTLAND, Ore., Jan. 2, 2002 — PacifiCorp has signed an improved power purchase contract for the energy output of Priest Rapids Hydroelectric Project and withdrawn its participation in a competitive license application for the project.

PacifiCorp agreed to a contract with Grant Public Utility District No. 2, the current owner and operator of the project, for purchase of a share of the project output when current contracts expire in 2005 and 2009. Other utility purchasers in the region signed similar contract offers.

“PacifiCorp’s retail customers will benefit from continued access to low-cost power because the contract offer is significantly improved over the one initially offered by Grant PUD last May,” said Matthew Wright, senior vice president of PacifiCorp.

Wright said that the assurance of continued benefits for customers made it unnecessary to take the risk of undertaking the competitive license application process, which could take several years.

The improved Grant PUD offer also assures benefits of the low-cost power for retail customers of other utility purchasers throughout the region.

PacifiCorp and the Yakama Nation had formed Yakama Hydroelectric Project LLC to apply for the federal license to operate the Priest Rapids Project.

“We are extremely proud of our partnership and positive relationship with the Yakama Nation and look forward to pursuing other energy initiatives of mutual benefit in the future,” Wright said.