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Pacific Power planning innovative changes for 2020 - 12/13/19

Pacific Power planning innovative changes for 2020

A rate proposal filed Dec. 13 calls for a decrease of 1.1 percent while investing in renewables, modernizing billing and strengthening the grid against wildfire

 

WALLA WALLA, Wash. (Dec. 13, 2019) — How the West generates, delivers and consumes electricity is undergoing a rapid evolution with customers at its center. Today Pacific Power filed a request with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission that calls for an overall rate decrease, and a major rethinking of how we produce, transport and ultimately use electricity to power Washington’s future growth.

 

Since Pacific Power’s last rate review beginning in 2014, the company has operated prudently and efficiently while making significant new investments to upgrade existing wind power production, acquire new wind and solar generation, build new transmission to get the power where it needs to go, and pioneer a new western energy market to lower customer costs, maximize renewable energy and enhance reliability. That sturdy foundation sets the stage for a dynamic new approach.

 

“Pacific Power’s top priority is to deliver affordable, safe and reliable electricity while supporting Washington customers’ desire for more renewable generation to power their homes and businesses,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO of Pacific Power. “Through both innovation and investment, we’re focused on increasing our renewable generation capacity, expanding our energy grid and making it more resilient and secure. This filing nearly doubles the amount of renewable wind energy serving Washington customers while maintaining affordability and reliability.”

 

The filing aligns Pacific Power with Washington’s ground-breaking 2019 law, the Clean Energy Transformation Act, which charts a path to 100 percent emission-free electricity by 2045.

 

In addition to supporting grid resiliency and increasing renewable generation, the rate request includes proposals to:

 

  • Simplify rates to equitably align costs with use patterns
  • Establish time-of-use pilot programs to provide more options for customers to save energy and money by shifting when they use power
  • Streamline prices for streetlights to allow more Washington communities to keep their streets safe and bright more efficiently

 

Together, the proposals promote using cleaner energy, continuing a long-standing drive to more efficiency and create greater fairness, transparency and understanding in how people use energy and pay for it.

 

What’s next?

The Commission will examine Pacific Power’s request and will determine whether the proposal should be accepted as filed, modified, or rejected. If accepted as filed, the rate change would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2021.

 

The public is invited to comment to the Commission and public meetings will be scheduled for this purpose. The Commission has the authority to set final rates that may be lower or higher than the company’s request, depending on the outcome of its examination.

 

About Pacific Power

Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 740,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. It is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, providing 1.9 million customers with value for their energy dollar and safe, reliable electricity. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.

Pacific Power planning innovative changes for 2020 - 12/13/19

Media Contact:

800-570-5838

 

Pacific Power planning innovative changes for 2020

A rate proposal filed Dec. 13 calls for a decrease of 1.1 percent while investing in renewables, modernizing billing and strengthening the grid against wildfire

 

YAKIMA, Wash. (Dec. 13, 2019) — How the West generates, delivers and consumes electricity is undergoing a rapid evolution with customers at its center. Today Pacific Power filed a request with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission that calls for an overall rate decrease, and a major rethinking of how we produce, transport and ultimately use electricity to power Washington’s future growth.

 

Since Pacific Power’s last rate review beginning in 2014, the company has operated prudently and efficiently while making significant new investments to upgrade existing wind power production, acquire new wind and solar generation, build new transmission to get the power where it needs to go, and pioneer a new western energy market to lower customer costs, maximize renewable energy and enhance reliability. That sturdy foundation sets the stage for a dynamic new approach.

 

“Pacific Power’s top priority is to deliver affordable, safe and reliable electricity while supporting Washington customers’ desire for more renewable generation to power their homes and businesses,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO of Pacific Power. “Through both innovation and investment, we’re focused on increasing our renewable generation capacity, expanding our energy grid and making it more resilient and secure. This filing nearly doubles the amount of renewable wind energy serving Washington customers while maintaining affordability and reliability.”

 

The filing aligns Pacific Power with Washington’s ground-breaking 2019 law, the Clean Energy Transformation Act, which charts a path to 100 percent emission-free electricity by 2045.

 

In addition to supporting grid resiliency and increasing renewable generation, the rate request includes proposals to:

 

  • Simplify rates to equitably align costs with use patterns
  • Establish time-of-use pilot programs to provide more options for customers to save energy and money by shifting when they use power
  • Streamline prices for streetlights to allow more Washington communities to keep their streets safe and bright more efficiently

 

Together, the proposals promote using cleaner energy, continuing a long-standing drive to more efficiency and create greater fairness, transparency and understanding in how people use energy and pay for it.

 

What’s next?

The Commission will examine Pacific Power’s request and will determine whether the proposal should be accepted as filed, modified, or rejected. If accepted as filed, the rate change would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2021.

 

The public is invited to comment to the Commission and public meetings will be scheduled for this purpose. The Commission has the authority to set final rates that may be lower or higher than the company’s request, depending on the outcome of its examination.

 

About Pacific Power

Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 740,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. It is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, providing 1.9 million customers with value for their energy dollar and safe, reliable electricity. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.

Left to right: Matt Chancellor, Pacific Power regional business manager, Steve Helt, Rep. Cheri Helt, Mayor Sally Russell, Scott Bolton, Pacific Power senior vice president external affairs and customer solutions
Left to right: Matt Chancellor, Pacific Power regional business manager, Steve Helt, Rep. Cheri Helt, Mayor Sally Russell, Scott Bolton, Pacific Power senior vice president external affairs and customer solutions
Zydeco Kitchen & Cocktails receives Pacific Power's Blue Sky Legacy Award (Photo) - 12/11/19

Zydeco Kitchen & Cocktails receives Pacific Power’s Blue Sky Legacy Award

The Bend culinary mainstay is recognized for its long-term support of renewable energy over the past decade.

BEND, Ore. – Zydeco Kitchen & Cocktails in downtown Bend was honored with a Legacy Award as a Champion Partner in Pacific Power’s Blue Sky program. Since May 2009, the acclaimed restaurant has matched more than 120,000 kilowatt-hours with renewable energy through the program.

Cheri Helt, Zydeco co-owner along with husband Steve Helt, who serves as head chef, has a deeply stated commitment to preparing and serving high quality, hormone and pesticide-free ingredients. The Helts have a similar approach to supporting renewable energy.

“Our sustainable practices around food – sourcing locally, beef from cows raised in the Northwest, and organics whenever possible – are environmental and sustainable at heart,” said Cheri Helt. “We take that same approach to our energy usage and the Blue Sky program gives us the assurance that a portion of the electricity that powers our business supports renewable energy.”

“For over 20 years, the Blue Sky program has offered Pacific Power customers a simple and powerful way to live their values, reduce their carbon footprint and support renewable energy,” said Scott Bolton, senior vice president, external affairs and customer solutions. “Businesses such as Zydeco and their long-term participation in Blue Sky help us all move closer to a cost-effective, clean and sustainable energy future.”

The Blue Sky program provides Pacific Power customers with an easy way to support renewable energy development in the region. When customers enroll in Blue Sky, Pacific Power purchases renewable energy credits from regional renewable energy facilities. This guarantees that electricity from these renewable resources is delivered into the regional power pool and helps drive more new renewable energy development in the region. Electricity produced by renewable energy facilities helps offset electricity generated from other, nonrenewable sources, creating measurable environmental benefits.

Customers have a range of options when it comes to buying Blue Sky renewable energy: Blue Sky Block, Usage or Habitat. Whichever option they choose, Blue Sky allows customers to match their energy usage by supporting renewable energy certificates for as little as $1.95 per month. Participation in any of these plans is optional, and customers can change their level of participation or withdraw at any time. Pacific Power customers who want to learn more about which option is best for them may call Pacific Power at 800-769-3717 or visit www.pacificpower.net/bluesky.

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Update on Pacific Power storm outage restoration in Northern California, Southern Oregon - 11/27/19

CRESCENT CITY, Calif. (Nov. 27, 2019) — Pacific Power crews worked throughout the night making repairs to storm-damaged equipment in Northern California and Southern Oregon to restore power to customers affected by a powerful Pacific storm with high winds and heavy snow in the mountains. The number of customers affected has been reduced significantly from approximately 19,000 at the peak of the storm to approximately 1,700 by 10 a.m. Wednesday. 

“Restoration continues and crews will continue working to restore power as quickly as possible. Pacific Power has arranged for additional assistance to come from other locations to respond to outages in the harder hit areas and we expect to see good restoration progress throughout the day,” said David Lucas, Pacific Power vice president, operations. 

Pacific Power is supporting a community meal at the Foursquare Church in Crescent City on Thursday. Anyone in the community is invited to participate, including any who might still be affected by a power outage. Details for the event are available here: https://www.facebook.com/events/932037670528746/

Community Thanksgiving Dinner
Thanksgiving Day, 12-2 p.m. at the Del Norte Fairgrounds, 421 Hwy 101 N, Crescent City, Calif.

For those still without power, we sincerely thank you for your patience as we work to quickly and safely restore service. For updates with the most current estimated restoration times, check pacificpower.net/outage or text OUT to 722797. Customers can also use the Pacific Power mobile app or their online account to receive text or email updates on outages.

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Pacific Power crews are working to restore 8,000 customers in Crescent City area after first wave of major storm hits region - 11/26/19

Contact:  Pacific Power media hotline                     FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

                   1-800-570-5838                                                              Nov. 26, 2019

 

Pacific Power crews are working to restore 8,000 customers in Crescent City area after first wave of major storm hits region

Approximately 290 employees and contractors are at work in Northern California, Southern Oregon counties to restore power

 

Medford, Ore. – Pacific Power are working to restore electrical service to approximately 8,000 customers in Del Norte County, California.  At peak more than 15,000 Pacific Power customers were without service the afternoon of Nov. 26 due to a powerful Pacific storm resulting in high winds at the coast and heavy snow in the mountains.

 

“We expect outages to continue to occur through tonight and into the morning based on the current weather forecast,” said David Lucas, vice president of operations. “We are assessing damage as it is reported and are evaluating how best to deploy crews and equipment, realizing that the storm is ongoing and the full scope of the damage is unknown. We appreciate the patience we have already seen from customers, even during this holiday period, who understand that our crews are facing some very challenging weather obstacles as they work to repair the damage.”

 

The hardest hit area so far is Del Norte County with outages also occurring in Coos County, Josephine County, Jackson County and Siskiyou County.

 

As the storm and restoration continue, Pacific Power asks that residents concentrate on their own safety and comfort.

 

  • Stay away from any downed power lines. Even if the lines are not sparking, they could be energized and extremely dangerous. Call 911 immediately and then call us toll free at 1-877-508-5088 to report. Keep everyone, including pets, out of the area.
  • Never use kerosene or propane heaters inside without proper ventilation. They create dangerous fumes. Also, don't use charcoal in your house or garage. If you use a fireplace or wood stove to keep warm, pay careful attention to fire hazards.
  •  Stay warm by wearing multiple layers of clothing. Add a hat and blanket for extra comfort.  Put blankets or towels around windows and doors to help keep the heat in.
  • Protect your pipes during freezing weather by wrapping them with insulation. Also, leave faucets dripping so water won't freeze and crack the pipes.
  • As much as possible, don’t open refrigerators and freezers -they will keep food and perishables inside cold for some time when kept closed.
  • Check on your neighbors, especially those who may need special assistance. Check with others who have electricity, to see if you can visit.
  • If you use a portable electric generator, please do so with caution. Remember to follow the manufacturer's instructions. Generators should be outside or in a well ventilated unoccupied space.  Never plug your generator into an outlet and don't connect a generator directly to your home's main fuse box or circuit panel. This can create a dangerous back feed hazard for line crews.

 

Pacific Power is in discussions with local emergency officials and the Red Cross to set up warming shelters where needed. We will post that information when it becomes final.

Customers and media representatives can also track outages of any size online. Updates will be made as new information becomes available or at least hourly at pacificpower.net/outage.

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Stay safe as prospect of heavy snow and high wind hits Southern Oregon, Northern California - 11/25/19

Contact: Pacific Power media hotline                                                                                  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

                  (800) 570-5838                                                                                                                          Nov. 25, 2019

Stay safe as prospect of heavy snow and high wind hits Southern Oregon, Northern California

Check your Emergency Outage Kit, charge up mobile devices, avoid any downed lines,
call 1-877-508-5088 to report outages

MEDFORD, Ore. – With predictions of high winds and snow in the next few days, Pacific Power reminds its customers and the public to take precautions to stay safe and comfortable.

 

“Snow and high winds can knock down trees and powerlines causing power outages,” said David Lucas, Pacific Power vice president, operations. “We are staging additional crews and equipment in preparation for the storm projected to impact Southern Oregon and Northern California mid-day Tuesday through Wednesday afternoon. With the storm having the potential to affect holiday celebrations, we are pulling out all the stops to mobilize or crews as needed.”

 

Every home and business should have an Emergency Outage Kit that includes the following:

  • Flashlight
  • Battery-operated radio and clock
  • Extra batteries
  • Non-perishable foods
  • Manual can opener
  • Bottled water
  • Blankets

 

If a power outage occurs, Pacific Power encourages customers to first check their fuses and circuit breakers. If the power failure is not caused inside the home or business, customers should report the outage to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088.

 

Get the App. The new Pacific Power App for mobile devices can become invaluable during an outage. You can report and track an outage affecting you from your mobile device. The app is free and can be downloaded on the App Store or Google Play. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net/app.

 

Pacific Power suggests these safety precautions:

  • Stay away from all downed power lines and utility lines. Even if the lines are not sparking, they could be energized and extremely dangerous. Call 911 and report the outage to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088.
  • This current storm system may cause flooding. Be especially careful of any standing water or even soggy ground. A live down wire may seem to be a safe distance away, but is still extremely dangerous due to wet conditions.
  • Don’t drive over downed power lines.

 

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PacifiCorp and Yakama Nation reach Right of First Offer agreement for lands in White Salmon River canyon - 11/18/19

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Tom Gauntt,                                                                                         Nov. 18, 2019
PacifiCorp, 503-813-7291

Phil Rigdon, Yakama Nation
509-865-5121  

PacifiCorp and Yakama Nation reach Right of First Offer agreement for lands in White Salmon River canyon

Shared goals of stewardship and continuity highlight agreement concerning 289 acres near former Condit Dam site

Following months of negotiation, PacifiCorp and the Yakama Nation have agreed that the Nation will have a Right of First Offer for as much as 289 acres of land along the White Salmon River in south central Washington.

PacifiCorp, which has owned the land since the early 1900s as part of the operation of the Condit Hydroelectric Project, recently satisfied all federal requirements concerning the river’s rehabilitation following the removal of the Condit Dam in 2012. The company may look to sell the property in the future, but no timeline for putting the property on the market exists. At this time, the property is not for sale.

“We wanted to be as transparent as possible,” said Todd Olson, director of hydro compliance. “Having been involved in the White Salmon community for more than a century, we know there is a tremendous amount of interest in what happens to the lands on both sides of the river below the former dam site. The agreement with the Nation is not a sale agreement, but demonstrates our intention and the values we share with the Yakama and the people who use and love the river.”

"The Yakama Nation and PacifiCorp have worked together for decades in the White Salmon Basin and elsewhere in our traditional homelands,” said Virgil Lewis Sr., Tribal Council Vice-Chairman. ”We are pleased to jointly announce this Right of First Offer of PacifiCorp's lands along the lower White Salmon River: a unique opportunity to preserve in perpetuity critical river and upland habitats that sustain our way of life.  We will continue to work with our partners throughout the Yakama Nation’s traditional territories in order to honor, protect and restore our culture and the natural resources on which it depends, and to uphold our promise to the Creator to speak for those resources that cannot speak for themselves.”
 

The land included in the agreement begins at the former dam site down river to where the White Salmon flows into the Columbia. The still standing Condit Powerhouse is part of the property covered by the agreement. The agreement does not include company-owned property further upriver where leased cabin sites and Northwestern Park are located.

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About The Yakama Nation

The Yakama Nation and United States government entered into the Treaty of 1855 which ceded the lands of the White Salmon as part of a larger 10 million acre ceded area.  Through this treaty the Yakama Nation reserved in perpetuity its rights to fish at usual and accustomed stations throughout the Pacific Northwest.  Today the Yakama Nation is a co-manager of the fisheries of the White Salmon and works diligently to restore this resource and the river it depends on.

 

About PacifiCorp
PacifiCorp is one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, serving 1.9 million customers in the West. PacifiCorp operates as Pacific Power in Oregon, Washington and California, and as Rocky Mountain Power in Utah, Wyoming and Idaho. The company’s generating capability of more than 10,880 megawatts includes power from a diverse portfolio of wind, solar, hydro and thermal facilities. The company works to meet growing energy demand while protecting and enhancing the environment.

 

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Record low fall rains limit boat access on Lewis River Reservoirs - 11/15/19

Record low fall rains limit boat access on Lewis River Reservoirs

With water coming into reservoirs at one-third of normal, only one ramp remains open

WOODLAND, Wash. – Low water levels in the Lewis River drainage continue to impact boaters. The ramp at Yale Park is expected to be out of the water and unusable by Nov. 18.

The boat ramps at Saddle Dam Park, Cougar Park and Beaver Bay on Yale Reservoir and Swift Forest Camp ramp on Swift closed earlier in the year. Cresap ramp on Lake Merwin always closes for the season on Sept. 30. At this time, the only ramp still open on the three lakes is Speelyai on Lake Merwin.

Low snowpack and below average spring rains means water coming into the series of reservoirs managed by PacifiCorp is well below normal for this time of year. Statewide, the Washington governor has declared a drought. In addition, normal fall rains have not materialized.

Reservoir levels, even without the water conditions seen this year, are subject to available inflows and downstream flow requirements for fish and aquatic habitats. While reservoir levels are always subject to fluctuation, PacifiCorp recognizes the importance of recreational resources and balancing of recreation access with environmental requirements.

It is possible that November rains could improve the situation and make the Yale Park ramp usable again.

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Contact Info:
Contact: Tom Gauntt,                                                                        
PacifiCorp, 503-813-7291