More clean energy solutions, less reliance on gas needed to meet peak energy needs When discussing electric system affordability and reliability, natural gas is often portrayed as a guarantor of both. But, since the beginning of February, when Northwest temperatures dropped to near record lows, wholesale natural gas prices skyrocketed, causing serious disruption for gas-fired […]
Resources & Publications: Energy Matters Updates
Energy Matters Updates provide coverage and updates on current developments in the continuing push for a clean and affordable energy future, a future in which clean energy sources meet all new electricity demand, create local jobs, protect consumers and the environment, and replace polluting and climate-disrupting resources.
A blueprint for transitioning to a clean energy future Yesterday, Washington Governor Jay Inslee outlined his policy strategy to address the challenge of climate change. The governor’s package features proposals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity system, buildings, the transportation sector, fuels, and hydrofluorocarbons. The governor’s plan, if enacted and fully realized, would […]
(The NW Energy Coalition along with Renewable Northwest released the following statement today in response to the filing of a proposed settlement in the Puget Sound Energy rate case at the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission.) SEATTLE, Wash. — A diverse group of parties has reached a proposed settlement in the Puget Sound Energy (PSE) rate […]
Idaho Rivers United, a Coalition member for the past 14 years, advocates for protecting and restoring Idaho rivers. IRU defends at-risk fish populations, supports minimum stream flows that reduce dams’ harm to Idaho’s rivers. IRU argues that the four lower Snake River dams in Washington state are more of a threat to Idaho wild salmon survival than habitat destruction or overfishing.
Smart Grid NW’s mission is to promote, grow and enable the smart grid industry and infrastructure in the Pacific Northwest. To fulfill this mission, Smart Grid NW engages in education and regulatory policy work and brings together technically knowledgeable vendors, utility operators and regulators to create a regional smart grid roadmap.
In approving its seventh 20-year power plan on Wednesday, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council refilled the prescription to meet the region’s new electricity needs primarily with bill-shaving, emissions-avoiding, job-creating energy efficiency. The Council finds that acquiring 1,400 average megawatts of cost-effective energy efficiency in the plan’s five-year “action plan” period and 4,300 aMW by 2035 is the lowest cost and lowest risk strategy for meeting growth in electricity demand.
Transportation is one of the most polluting, energy-inefficient sectors of our economy, and the Pacific Northwest is uniquely positioned to leverage its clean electricity resources to change that. State and local policy should foster a greater role for the region’s electric utilities in electrifying transportation, not only for passenger vehicles but also for buses, short-haul vans and trucks, and non-road industrial equipment such as forklifts and shore power.
Nearly 35 years after the Northwest Power Act mandated equal treatment for fish and power generation in the Columbia-Snake system, 13 of the basin’s wild salmon and steelhead stocks are still listed under the Endangered Species Act. Recovery will require, among other measures, changes in hydropower system operations that will reduce electricity generation, such as dam removal or greatly increased spill over the dams. What would replacing the power cost Northwest energy consumers and how does it compare to escalating costs of maintaining aging power system infrastructure?
Northwest Power and Conservation Council and other planners systematically underestimate efficiency savings from new products
Regional energy efficiency achievements have far exceeded power planners’ expectations for the past 15 years. Better-than-expected savings sound great for consumers and the environment … and they are. But underestimating future efficiency savings can lead to false conclusions about the need for new power plants, resulting in unnecessary expenses that raise consumers’ bills.
Scenario planning lies at the heart of the analysis used to develop the 7th Northwest Power and Conservation Plan. The Northwest Power and Conservation Council wants your help in selecting and shaping the scenarios to be used. The 7th Plan will guide utilities’ energy choices, theoretically for the next 20 years and practically for at least five. Please look over the proposed scenarios and let the Council – and us – know which ones they must consider seriously while developing the 7th Plan.