As part of developing the region’s 7th Power Plan, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s power committee is holding a webinar on specific generation resources tomorrow — Thursday, Jan. 29 — from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Pacific time. The posted agenda items are (1) assessment of natural gas natural gas peaking plants (single-cycle combustion turbines or SCCTs and reciprocating engines) and (2) assessment of onshore utility-scale wind.
Issues: Renewable Energy
Clean, renewable energy sources – including wind, solar and geothermal power – do not pollute our air or our water and will never run out, unlike coal, natural gas and other fossil fuels. While fossil fuels are still the dominant source of electricity worldwide, renewable energy development is on the rise.
Every five years, the region’s official power planning agency prepares an updated 20-year forecast of the Northwest’s electric power needs and a plan for how those needs should be met. The forthcoming 7th Plan will help us raise the bar higher, capitalize on our region’s clean energy success and set us on the course to a cleaner, more affordable and wildlife-friendly future. We need all hands on deck … starting now!
There are many reasons to be joyous about clean energy advancements in 2014. The cost of solar and wind energy continues to fall, utilities are investing in energy storage and electric vehicle charging, Chinese coal demand is falling, sustainable investing is on the rise, and businesses are more vocal than ever on the need for climate action.
Boeing has announced it will assemble its 737 airplanes with renewable energy. The company will buy renewable energy credits from Puget Sound Energy for wind power produced at the Wild Horse Wind and Solar facility. NWEC communications director Marc Krasnowsky says, “They’re basically turning their fossil power green, and that’s laudable.”
Erin Hansell-Heideman of Ione, Oregon explains how renewable energy development is an economic boon for rural communities. Wind farms generate clean electricity, create thousands of rural jobs and accrue millions of dollars in revenue for schools. Hansel-Heidman says, “By harvesting Oregon’s abundant wind resources we are opening up opportunities for rural communities and other family farms throughout the state.”
Solar power is a real deal right now and Idaho Power got state approval for two sales contracts with developers. The Idaho Public Utilities Commission approved the two contracts Friday for the two projects – one in Kuna and a second in Grand View – that would produce 120 megawatts, enough power to serve 83,000 average-sized homes. The projects are scheduled to be completed in 2016.
NW Energy Coalition and other Clean Energy Scenarios Stakeholders submit comments on PacificCorp's Integrated Resource Plan
The “Clean Energy Scenarios Stakeholders” (NW Energy Coalition, HEAL Utah, Idaho Conservation League, Mormon Environmental Stewardship Alliance, Powder River Basin Resource Council, Renewable Northwest and Sierra Club) have submitted comments for the PacificCorp’s 2015 IRP modeling process concerning proposed carbon price and solar PV scenarios. Click here to read the comments.
The energy required to build a new commercial-scale wind turbine amounts to only a small amount of what the turbine will produce over a projected 20-year life span, according to a new life-cycle analysis of wind turbines performed by Oregon State University researchers. The environmental analysis, published in the International Journal of Sustainable Manufacturing, concludes that a 2-megawatt turbine built for a typical Pacific Northwest wind farm will pay back the energy used in its manufacture and installation within five to eight months of coming into service.
Today Governor John Kitzhaber signed HB 4126 to preserve Oregon’s highly successful Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). The bill is the result of a diverse stakeholder process convened by the Governor to address a ballot measure, which would have gutted the state’s RPS by allowing existing hydropower to count towards the standard. Renewable Northwest commends the Governor for his leadership in preserving the RPS, which has helped to bring over $9 billion of capital investment to Oregon as well as thousands of jobs and tax dollars to rural communities.
Customer participation in voluntary green power programs increased by 13.1% across more than 60 utilities in the Northwest between 2010 and 2012, according to a new report released today from Coalition member Renewable Northwest Project. RNP annually summarizes the progress of these programs in its report, “Powerful Choices”…