Portland General Electric and Douglas County PUD partner to advance the Northwest’s clean energy goals
May 13, 2020
Portland, Ore. – Portland General Electric Company (NYSE: POR) and Douglas County Public Utility District No. 1 are partnering to optimize the region’s resources in support of clean energy for customers. The two Northwest utilities have signed a five-year power purchase agreement to supply PGE customers with up to 160 megawatts of additional capacity from the Wells Hydroelectric Project on the Columbia River north of Wenatchee, Wash. The agreement also provides Douglas County PUD with PGE load management and wholesale market sales services.
“This partnership demonstrates the value of utilities collaborating to deliver clean energy solutions for customers and our region,” said Maria Pope, PGE president and CEO. “We are able to provide our portfolio management expertise as a fully integrated utility to Douglas County PUD while they are providing us access to additional emissions-free hydroelectric power.”
The partnership helps pave a path for Oregon and the Northwest to make progress toward achieving their decarbonization goals while maintaining reliability with on-call hydro power when customers need it. In addition, it enables PGE to continue focusing on providing stable, reliable energy supplies without building new thermal power plants.
“Douglas PUD is excited to expand our long-term partnership with PGE. This agreement creates efficiencies for a small utility like Douglas PUD while creating value for PGE, it’s a win-win,” said Gary Ivory, Douglas PUD General Manager. The Wells Project can generate up to 840 megawatts of electricity, substantially more power than is used in Douglas County. Revenues from wholesale power sales to other utilities support PUD operations and help keep electricity prices low for area residents and businesses.
Beginning in January 2021 the five-year agreement is expected to contribute between 100 and 160 megawatts toward a roughly 250-megawatt power capacity need that PGE identified in its 2019 Integrated Resource Plan. The Oregon Public Utility Commission greenlighted the plan in March 2020.
PGE also plans to issue one or more requests for proposals for new non-emitting resources over the course of the next year and to continue to pursue bilateral agreements for existing resources to focus on capacity needs in the 2025 timeframe. Prior to reaching the agreement with Douglas County PUD, the company estimated these activities could result in approximately 600 megawatts of additional capacity resources and up to 150 average megawatts of new renewable resources. PGE’s resource plan aims to support reliability and affordability while driving down greenhouse gas emissions by leveraging energy efficiency and customer programs, existing capacity in the Northwest, new technologies like energy storage, and cost savings afforded by federal tax credits for renewables.
The total amount of additional power PGE customers will require by 2025 is currently estimated at approximately 700 megawatts, but this will be refined as demand forecasts are updated, factoring in the economic impact of COVID-19 restrictions and other developments.
About Portland General Electric Company
Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is a fully integrated energy company based in Portland, Oregon, with operations across the state. The company serves approximately 892,000 customers in 51 cities, has 16 generation plants in five Oregon counties, and maintains and operates 13 public parks and recreation areas. For 130 years, PGE has delivered safe, affordable and reliable energy to Oregonians. Together with its customers, PGE has the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the U.S. PGE and its 3,000 employees are working with customers to build a clean energy future. PGE, employees, retirees and the PGE Foundation donate more than $4 million annually to support nonprofits and schools. In addition, employees and retirees log more than 45,000 volunteer hours annually. For more information visit portlandgeneral.com/cleanvision.
About Douglas County Public Utility District #1: Organized in 1936, Douglas County PUD began operations in 1945 as a non-profit, locally owned electric distribution system. From the beginning, delivery of a reliable supply of electric energy at the lowest possible cost has been our guiding principle. The Wells Hydroelectric Project has become the model for providing clean, efficient, reliable and renewable hydroelectric power in the Northwest. This project boasts the most effective juvenile fish by-pass on the Columbia River, and its operation funds several salmon and steelhead hatcheries.
Safe Harbor Statement
Statements in this news release that relate to future plans, objectives, expectations, performance, events and the like may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding the company’s future energy mix; statements concerning the company’s integration of smart-grid technologies and renewable energy into the grid; statements regarding acquisition, construction, completion, and operation of generating and battery storage facilities; as well as other statements containing words such as “anticipates,” “believes,” “intends,” “estimates,” “promises,” “expects,” “should,” “conditioned upon,” “will,” “would,” “could” and similar expressions. Investors are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including construction and operational risks relating to the generation and battery storage facilities, including wind conditions and unscheduled delays or plant outages, which may result in unanticipated operating, maintenance and repair costs, as well as replacement power costs; the costs of compliance with environmental laws and regulations, including changes in weather, hydroelectric and energy markets conditions, which could affect the availability and cost of purchased power and fuel; changes in capital market conditions, which could affect the availability and cost of capital and result in delay or cancellation of capital projects; failure to complete capital projects on schedule or within budget, failure of the counterparty to perform under the agreements, or the abandonment of capital projects, which could result in the company’s inability to recover project costs; the outcome of various legal and regulatory proceedings; and general economic and financial market conditions. As a result, actual results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements included in this news release are based on information available to the company on the date hereof and such statements speak only as of the date hereof. The company assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statement. Prospective investors should also review the risks and uncertainties listed in the company’s most recent annual report on form 10-K and the company’s reports on forms 8-K and 10-Q filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, including management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations and the risks described therein from time to time.
For more information contact Steve Corson, PGE, 503-464-8444, Steven.Corson@pgn.com