Idaho state regulators have accepted a long-range planning document from PacifiCorp, the electric utility that serves eastern Idaho. At the same time, the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has urged the utility to increase its efforts toward energy efficiency and demand reduction in the face of increasing coal costs.
PacifiCorp projects it will meet 67% of its future generation needs through energy efficiency, acquiring 953 MW within the next decade. Other projected resources include 140 MW of solar generation, 12 MW of combined heat and power, and between 650 MW and 1,333 MW of market power purchases. The company anticipates more market purchases because wholesale power and natural gas prices are down significantly due to the expansion of shale gas exploration in North America.
Without these additions, the utility anticipates a system capacity deficit of 824 MW starting this year, increasing to 2,308 MW in 2022.