Puget Sound Energy Announces Long-Term Hydropower Contract - Diversified Communications

Commercial, Energy Efficiency, Utilities, Hydro  -  March 31, 2023

Puget Sound Energy Announces Long-Term Hydropower Contract

Puget Sound Energy (PSE) and Chelan County Public Utility District (PUD) are joining forces to power Puget with renewable hydropower in the long term. This 20-year contract gives Puget the environmentally friendly infrastructure to achieve future renewable energy goals and flexibly fulfill Washington’s energy needs.

Competitively priced, the initiative will supply PSE with 25% of the hydropower sourced from PUD’s Rock Island and Rocky Reach projects on the Columbia River from 2031 to 2051. PSE’s current contracts with PUD, expiring in 2026 and 2031, provide a portion of the output from the two Columbia River projects.

In a statement, PSE’s Vice President of Energy Supply, Ron Roberts, explored hydropower’s appeal: “We are pleased to continue our partnership with Chelan PUD to provide clean, reliable and affordable hydropower to our customers. It’s another important step on our way to serving customers with 100% carbon neutral resources by 2030 and 100% clean electricity by 2045. In addition to clean energy and capacity, PSE’s 25% share will continue to provide a reliable source of resource adequacy and the ability to integrate renewable resources for our customers.” 

PUD’s customers benefit from a mix of short-term market-based and long-term cost-based products. With both contract types, a “slice” of PUD’s hydropower output is provided. Hydropower has increasingly become a sought-after source of carbon-free renewable energy. Companies covet its environmental attributes as they seek to satisfy new regulatory requirements through the Climate Commitment Act and Clean Energy Transformation Act.

Now finalized after 18 months of negotiations, the contract includes both carbon-free energy attributes provided by hydropower as well as flexible capacity to help PSE fulfill peak energy needs during times when customer usage is high.

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