Avista files 30-year electricity resource plan

Avista Utilities, an operating division of Avista Corp., projects having adequate power generation resources to meet customers' electric power needs until 2020, according to the 2013 Electric Integrated Resource Plan filed August 30 with Washington and Idaho state regulators.

The plan details projected growth in electricity demand and the new resources needed to serve customers over the next 20 years.

In the 2014-2033 plan timeframe, Avista anticipates customer growth of just over 1 percent, a decrease in projected growth from 1.6 percent that was noted in the 2011 plan. In addition, the recommendations for new renewable power resources from the previous plan have been met with a 30-year purchased power agreement with Palouse Wind and the Kettle Falls Generating Station being qualified as a renewable energy resource under Washington state's Energy Independence Act.

Some highlights of the 2013 plan include:

·      Demand response (temporarily reducing the demand for energy) is included in the preferred resource strategy (PRS) for the first time and could provide 19 MW of peak energy reduction in the 2022 - 2027 timeframe.

·      Energy efficiency (using less energy to perform activities) reduces load growth by 42 percent over the next 20 years.

·      486 MW of clean-burning natural gas-fired generation facilities are required between 2020 and 2033.

·      Transmission upgrades will be needed to carry the output from new generation. Avista will continue to participate in regional efforts to expand the region's transmission system.

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