SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The Northwest Power and Conservation Council predicts the electricity needs of Northwest states can be met in the next 20 years mostly through conservation efforts, with little need to construct new power plants.
The Portland, Oregon-based council recently issued its 20-year plan for meeting the energy needs of Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana.
The council said some utilities might have to build new plants to help integrate inconsistent natural resources such as wind power into the grid.
The council recommended programs that would pay some electricity consumers to voluntarily refrain from power use during times when power is in short supply. The 20-year plan accounts for planned closures of coal-fired plants in Washington, Oregon and Nevada that help supply power to the region.
There are two members of the council from each state, appointed by the governors.