PacifiCorp announces initial results from its renewables RFP

26 April 2004 – PacifiCorp announced Friday that it has received bids for 5600 MW of new renewable resources in its request for proposal for adding 1100 MW of renewables in the next seven years.

The company’s “Renewable Resource Request for Proposals,” or RFP 2003B, is a consequence of the utility’s integrated resource planning (IRP) process, a ten-year plan to ensure safe, reliable, low-cost energy for Pacific Power and Utah Power customers. PacifiCorp serves six western states as Pacific Power and Utah Power. This is one of the largest such requests for renewables ever released by an investor-owned utility in the US.

“We received tremendous response to the renewables RFP, and that demonstrates to us there are many sophisticated bidders interested in delivering renewable resources to our customers.” said Stan Watters, senior vice president, PacifiCorp. “Building a diverse, low-cost and low-risk energy portfolio that includes renewables will allow us to meet demand and provide the best value for customers.”

Proposals came from 42 bidders for 54 projects, most of which are new developments. In all, 85 per cent of the proposed resources are from wind sources, and the remaining is split between geothermal and hydro. Bidders were required to submit pricing with and without extension of the federal production tax credit for wind resources.

Proposed delivery points are spread across PacifiCorp’s six-state service area, with all resources located within the Western Electricity Coordinating Council, including areas outside PacifiCorp’s control area.

Next steps in the RFP process include thorough review of the bids, verifying creditworthiness of top scorers and assembling a short list of proposal finalists. PacifiCorp expects it will announce the bid winners in late June.

In the next ten years, PacifiCorp’s IRP calls for bringing up to 1400 MW of renewable generation into PacifiCorp’s resource portfolio. Projected load growth indicates a total need for about 4000 additional MW of capacity between 2004 and 2013. This growth includes additional energy needs of current customers, requirements for new customers and potential increased requirements for supply reserves.

PacifiCorp’s IRP provides a diversified resource approach incorporating both reduced energy use through demand-side management as well as new resources. New resources include renewables such as wind and thermal resources such as natural gas and coal. Together, these resources are expected to provide low-cost, low-risk and highly reliable sources of energy for customers while balancing social and environmental needs.
The IRP examines expected load and resource balance over the next 20 years and proposes an action plan for acquiring resources within the coming five years. It is re-examined every two years.

“The renewable RFP demonstrates an extension of the company’s growing use of renewable resources,” Watters said. “For example, we are pleased to have played a key role in bringing the new 41MW Eurus Combine Hills wind farm online last December in Oregon. We’re also proud of our wind power purchases in Wyoming, as well as our customers’ support of wind energy through our voluntary Blue Sky program.”

Last month, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) awarded PacifiCorp its 2004 Utility Leadership Award at its world-wide conference in Chicago.

PacifiCorp is one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, providing more than 1.5 million customers with reliable, efficient energy. The company works to meet growing energy demand while protecting and enhancing the environment. PacifiCorp has more than 8300 MW of generation capacity from coal, hydro, renewable wind power, gas-fired combustion turbines and geothermal. PacifiCorp operates as Pacific Power in Oregon, Wyoming, Washington and California; and as Utah Power in Utah and Idaho.