Idaho Power seeks proposals for new resources needed by summer 2023

Published on May 25, 2021 by Chris Galford

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Idaho Power put out a request last week for proposals to provide around 80 MW of new resources to fill the growing summer evening electricity demand in 2023.

Fueled by ongoing growth throughout its service area, the request would stand to benefit Idaho Power’s more than 590,000 customers in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon. With that comes additional capacity and reliability demands. Changes to the regional transmission markets have restricted both the transmission system outside of Idaho Power’s service territory and its ability to import energy from western market hubs.

While 80 MW are needed immediately to address peak-hour energy needs, the company predicts the need could grow to approximately 400 MW by summer 2025 as more coal units retire. As a result, additional resources are being considered, so long as they can provide during peak summer demand. A diversity of resource types and bid structures is expected.

This sudden need will complement another 120 MW solar project being installed near Twin Falls, Idaho, scheduled to enter service at the end of 2022. Separately, a transmission line is being plotted to help import energy into Idaho Power’s service area from the Pacific Northwest as early as 2026.