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PacifiCorp wind expansion advances with Wyoming approval - 04/16/18

Contact: Bob Gravely                                                             FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   

(503) 813-7282                                                                       April 16, 2018

 

PacifiCorp wind expansion advances with Wyoming approval

 State commission approves settlement around “Energy Vision 2020” plan

 

Portland, Ore, April 16, 2018 – The Wyoming Public Service Commission on Thursday approved PacifiCorp moving ahead with a significant wind and transmission expansion plan that would add enough new wind energy to power more than 400,000 homes by 2020.

 

In a bench decision, the Wyoming PSC approved a settlement agreement between PacifiCorp, the Wyoming Industrial Energy Consumers, the Wyoming Office of Consumer Advocate and the Interwest Energy Alliance on the new wind and transmission portions of PacifiCorp’s Energy Vision 2020 proposal. The commission also approved the Certificates of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCNs) that are needed for construction of the Wyoming-based projects.

 

“Approval by the Wyoming commission marks a key step forward for our plan to significantly expand the amount of cost-effective renewable energy serving customers,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO of Pacific Power, the unit of PacifiCorp that serves customers in Oregon, Washington, and Northern California.

 

As part of the settlement agreement, a previously announced 161 MW wind project in Uinta County, WY will no longer be included in the initiative. PacifiCorp also agreed to additional customer protections in the event of cost overruns as part of the agreement.

 

Included in the approved settlement are three new Wyoming wind projects that will provide a total 1,150 MW of new wind, which represents about a 60 percent expansion of PacifiCorp’s current owned and contracted wind fleet, as well as a 140 mile high-voltage transmission line in Wyoming that will help more wind energy connect to PacifiCorp’s transmission system.

 

In addition to the new wind projects and transmission line, the company’s Energy Vision 2020 initiative would upgrade, or “repower,” the company’s existing wind fleet in Wyoming, Washington and Oregon with longer blades and newer technology to boost output and extend the life of the projects.

 

The repowering plan is being considered separately by the Wyoming commission and is still pending. Components of the plan also are still waiting state regulatory approval in Utah, Oregon and Idaho.

 

Pending approval from state commissions, acquisition of rights of way, and receipt of permits, construction on the wind and transmission projects is expected to start in 2019.

 

The Energy Vision 2020 projects were identified in the company’s 2017 Integrated Resource Plan as the most cost-effective option to meet customers’ energy needs over the next 20 years. Completing the projects by 2020 will allow customers to realize the full benefit of production tax credits and provide a net savings for customers over the life of the projects.

 

Visit the following link for more information about Energy Vision 2020. www.pacificorp.com/ev2020  

 

 

 

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Know what's below before you hoe - 04/11/18

Contact:                                                                                  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tom Gauntt, Pacific Power                                                    April 11, 2018

503-813-7291                                                                         

 

Know what’s below before you hoe
Be safe and call 8-1-1 first to find any underground utilities that could endanger you

 

PORTLAND, Ore. — Every eight minutes in America someone risks their life by striking an underground utility line. Pacific Power urges customers to protect themselves and their families and change this alarming statistic with one simple act:  dialing 8-1-1 two days before doing any digging.

 

            “Installing a mail box or post for a deck or planting a tree are among the many commonplace projects that should trigger a call to 8-1-1,” said Steven Harkin, Pacific Power’s director of safety and training, referring to the national toll-free Call Before You Dig phone number. “Those may seem like simple, harmless projects, but the hazards are very real. If you hit a buried electric line, you could die. It’s that simple.”

           

PacifiCorp has approximately 20,000 miles of underground cable in the West. There are nearly 20 million miles of underground utility lines in the United States. These buried facilities, including gas, water, sewer, cable TV, high-speed Internet, landline telephone, provide the services Americans depend on for their basic everyday needs. But if you don’t know where they are buried before you dig, you are in danger. Even if you are lucky enough to not be harmed, you could be responsible for causing a service outage in your neighborhood—and potentially be responsible for the substantial repair costs.

 

If you are planning a job that requires digging, even if hiring a professional, a call to 8-1-1 is required before work begins. The 8-1-1 service is free and couldn’t be easier. It’s a Federal Communications Commission-designated national one-call number that connects a caller from anywhere in the country to the appropriate local one-call center. The one-call center then alerts local underground facility owners so they can mark the approximate location of their lines with paint or flags.

 

Although the Call Before You Dig system has been active for many years, according to a recent national survey, 45 percent – nearly half of people who plan to dig this year will not call 8-1-1 first.

 

To learn more about electrical safety or to order free electrical safety materials, call Pacific Power’s public safety department at 800-375-7085 or visit pacificpower.net/safety.
 

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About Pacific Power

Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 740,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. Our goal is to provide our customers with value for their energy dollar, and safe, reliable electricity. Pacific Power is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, with 1.8 million customers in six western states. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.

 

Copper thieves cause power outage - 04/10/18

Contact:                                                                        FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tom Gauntt, Pacific Power,                                         April 10, 2018

503-813-7291                                                                         

 

Copper thieves cause power outage

Customers suffer outage as recent theft at substation provides reminder that wire thieves steal from all

Wallula, Wash. – Pacific Power is working with Walla Walla County law enforcement officials to apprehend copper thieves who caused more than $50,000 in damage on March 28 and cut electrical service to more than 1,000 customers for eight hours.

“Stealing wire creates an unnecessary burden on our customers and we are taking aggressive action to stop it,” said Bill Clemens Pacific Power’s regional business manager. “Removing wire put our crews at risk as they go about their work on the local power grid, and add expense to the system at a time we’re working to reduce cost and minimize any future rate increases. Resulting outages inconvenience our customers, and the thieves themselves are in mortal danger as they perform these criminal acts.”

The theft was discovered March 28 by an observant lineman who noticed an open gate. He found that the lock had been sawed through. Inside, all of the copper grounding wire within the substation on Dodd Road in Wallula had been removed. Without grounding wire, a substation is unsafe to work in. The lineman immediately reported the theft.

In order to replace the grounding wire, it was necessary to turn off the substation, which inconvenienced more than 1,000 customers nearby for 8 hours as a crew worked until after midnight to replace the grounding wire to make the substation safe again.

Thieves hit a second substation in the area the weekend of April 7. The damage was less extensive in that instance and no outage resulted. The cost of repair has not yet been calculated.

Law enforcement officials and Pacific Power are asking residents to report if they saw anything suspicious in the vicinity of Dodd Road between Railex and Sundance Roads March 26, 27 or 28.  In addition, please call local law enforcement if you hear of anyone seeking to sell a large quantity of copper wire.

            If residents see any suspicious activity around power poles or substations do not confront these individuals, but call 911. If someone has knowledge of past incidents, please call 509-527-1960, the sheriff’s non-emergency number.

 

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About Pacific Power

Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 740,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. Our goal is to provide our customers with value for their energy dollar, and safe, reliable electricity. Pacific Power is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, with 1.8 million customers in six western states. For more information, visit  www.pacificpower.net.