June 2024 Newsletter – Fall conference, Tribal Circumstances Analysis, and more!


Fall 2024 Clean & Affordable Energy Conference

Save the date for our Clean & Affordable Energy Conference on November 13, 2024 at the HUB on the University of Washington’s campus in Seattle, WA! Sponsorship opportunities are available – please reach out to beth@nwenergy.org for more information. 

We’re hiring!

We’re hiring a Communications & Events Manager! Spread the word within your network – application review begins July 8.

In the States, on the Ground


To achieve a future of salmon recovery and achieving our climate goals, we must confront the history of our region’s hydropower system. The federal government released its Tribal Circumstances Analysis, which marks the first time the federal government has officially acknowledged the historic and ongoing harm the federal Columbia and Snake River hydropower dams inflict on Tribal nations, including cultural resources, sacred sites, economies, and homes. As Tony Schick with Oregon Public Broadcasting reports, federal officials understood these harms and at the time considered them a good thing. We encourage you to read the analysis and consider its implications. It’s critical to continue to center Tribal leadership and perspectives as we move towards a diversified energy system in the Northwest that allows a strategic decision to replace the Lower Snake River dams. 


As a part of implementation of the Washington Decarbonization Act for Large Utilities (HB 1589), Puget Sound Energy (PSE) published a Work Plan and filed a request with the Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) this month to consolidate their 2025 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) and 2025 Clean Energy Implementation Plan (CEIP) into a single “Integrated System Plan” (ISP) to be filed in 2027. This will be considered in dockets UE-240433 and UG-240434. The UTC has also initiated a rulemaking (U-240281) to adopt rules for implementing HB 1589, including Integrated System Planning requirements, and adopting a cost test for emission reduction measures. The Coalition is supportive of these filings so far, and will stay involved as they unfold to ensure these plans prioritize the public’s best interest.


The Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) staff had their first workshop for UM 2211, Phase 2 implementation of HB 2475 which increases the PUC’s authority to mitigate energy burden, typically defined as when a household’s energy bills are greater than 6% of their total income. This month’s workshop discussed PUC staff’s data landscape analysis of energy burden, which inventoried the relevant energy burden metrics currently being reported and identified gaps in data collection. PUC staff are proposing to create a single, quarterly report for key Energy Burden Data with standardized definitions and data and reporting methods. The Coalition and other advocates are filing joint comments mainly in support of Staff’s recommendations. Comments are due on July 8 and can be made on the PUC’s website.


Rocky Mountain Power (RMP), the business unit of PacifiCorp that serves Southeastern Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming, recently filed its General Rate Case (GRC) in Idaho. RMP is requesting a $92.4M increase to their revenue requirement over the next two years – equating to a 26.8% increase – with a 10.3% Return on Equity (ROE). Additional issues include RMP adjusting the sharing for the Energy Cost Adjustment Mechanism (ECAM) from 90%/10% to 95%/5%, which means 95% of unforecasted energy purchases would be passed onto customers, with the utility only responsible for 5%. Finally, RMP proposes a continuation of its rate modernization plan which means increases to the customer charge, the fixed charges on your bill. The deadline to intervene in this is July 11 for this GRC, PAC-E-24-04. The Idaho Conservation League has already filed a petition to intervene among a few others, and the Coalition is not planning to intervene. 


The first meeting of Northwestern Energy’s low-income advisory (LIAG) group took place in mid-June. The LIAG is a requirement from the 2022 NWE General Rate Case. The Coalition participates in the group, and we are going to push the LIAG in reversing the trend of declining enrollment in the bill discount program, improving the administrative enrollment process, and alleviating roadblocks to utilizing Universal System Benefit Program (USBP) dollars. This USBP program began 25 years ago to fund renewable energy projects, low-income energy assistance, and low-income weatherization. The program raises around $9 million annually through a surcharge on utility revenues, which is woefully insufficient to alleviate raising customer energy burdens in the state.

NW Energy Coalition – Member Spotlight

Climate Action Families

Climate Action Families is based in Washington State and works with other youth and family-oriented climate organizations across the Northwest and nationally to help build grassroots support and infrastructure through families to help with the energy transition, and engage and engage on many topics of climate resilience and recovery. Along with their work on advancing clean energy, they’ve been using their cross-state platform to push for the elimination of coal from the Northwest grid.

Climate Action Families have had youth on the international stage, before congress, in national and state lawsuits, and leading the largest youth climate marches ever! They want to ensure that youth have the information, resources, and support they need to make the change they desire in the timeframe necessary.

Climate Action Families joined the Coalition in the fall of 2023 and the Coalition team is excited to continue our work together this year!

What’s growing in your garden?

Alma Pinto, Energy Justice Policy Associate

The strawberry and raspberry harvest shows no signs of slowing down.

Beth Brooks, Development Director

Garden. Lillies.

Alessandra de la Torre, Policy Associate

Growing some cucumbers, tomatoes, eggplant, beans and more at a community garden 🙂 

Matt Joyce, Communications & Events Coordinator

Running out of tacks as this pothos has slowly taken over the wall.

Support our work to accelerate the Northwest’s transition to a clean, affordable, and equitable energy future.