PacifiCorp drafts RFP for 1.2 GW of Wyoming wind energy

Dive Brief:

  • In step with its 2017 Integrated Resource Plan, PacifiCorp is developing a Request for Proposals (RFP) for up to 1,270 MW of Wyoming wind resources combined with a new 500 kV transmission line.
  • The utility expects to issue the RFP on Aug. 25, with the results evaluated and presented to Oregon and Utah regulators in 2018.
  • PacificCorp said it will consider projects bid under 20-year power purchase agreements or "Build-Transfer" agreements where the bidder develops the project but ultimately transfers the asset to PacifiCorp.

Dive Insight:

PacifiCorp's wind RFP isn't entirely clean. The new transmission segment, Energy Gateway West sub-segment D2 - Aeolus to Bridger/Anticline, will run from a substation near Medicine Bow, Wyo., to the Jim Bridger coal plant.

While its long-term plan does include more than 3 GW of renewable resources in the long term, the utility also is making efforts to keep coal plants in compliance and online. 

The utility, which operates across six states, said projects do not necessarily have to qualify for production tax credits, but they should be PTC-eligibleand will probably need the credits anyway. "As informed by
PacifiCorp’s 2017 IRP, it is likely that PTCs are needed to deliver all-in economic benefits for customers," PacificCorp noted in a May 31 presentation outlining a draft of the RFP.



The presentation outlines potential benchmark resource sizes, tie-in locations and in-service years:

  • 110 MW, Foote Creek substation, 2020
  • 250 MW, Aeolus substation, 2020
  • 250 MW, Shirley substation, 2020
  • 250 MW, Shirley substation. 2020

PacifiCorp's IRP included clean energy in three tranches: transmission access for wind energy, near-term wind capacity construction, and longer-term solar and wind plans. The expansive proposal looks to take advantage of near-term federal tax credits, and includes tighter environmental restrictions on its coal facilities.

Between 2028 and 2036, PacifiCorp plans to add another 859 MW of new wind capacity, with 85 MW in Wyoming and 774 MW in Idaho. Also within that time frame, the company will propose more than 1,000 MW of new solar capacity.

Recommended Reading:

Follow on Twitter

Filed Under: Solar & Renewables
Top image credit: Depositphotos