Google eyes defection from NV Energy service
- Google filed a petition with the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada last week seeking to clarify rules governing corporations who want to purchase power from providers other than incumbent utility NV Energy.
- The company also sought clarification on applying for bundled electricity services on an interim basis during construction of a potential facility, as well as the process for notifying NV Energy it would seek service from other suppliers without incurring exit fees.
- The Reno Gazette-Journal reports the tech giant could be looking to use competitive power providers for a project after buying 1,210 acres of land at the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center site.
Google appears to be taking a familiar route in Nevada of major corporations looking to shop for alternative sources of energy on the competitive markets. The question is, how will NV Energy respond?
It isn't the first time the incumbent utility has faced load defection from major corporations looking to leave its service and procure greener or cheaper power from alternative suppliers.
A couple of well-known casinos fought — and won — the ability to purchase green energy on the competitive market last year, though they paid hefty exit fees to do so.
Data provider Switch was another company locked in a duel over exit fees with NV Energy, but was finally approved to leave at the end of 2016. The frequency of these battles is increasing in Nevada and elsewhere as corporations set sustainability goals and look to hedge power prices with long-term PPAs.
NV Energy has struck deals with some of their key accounts, such as a solar farm deal with fellow tech giant Apple. It's too soon to tell if NV Energy will seek similar measures to woo Google, especially as Nevada attempts to positions itself as a self-styled Silicon Valley of the Intermountain West.
However, Google has set ambitious green energy goals, pledging to run its facilities on 100% renewable energy. The company hit that milestone at the end of last year, utilizing both direct investments in wind and solar facilities and the purchase of renewable energy credits.
Correction: A previous verison of this post mistakenly said Switch was currently dueling with NV Energy over exit fees to leave its service. That's incorrect: Switch was approved to leave NV Energy in December of last year
- Reno Gazette-Journal Google filing seeks energy alternatives to Warren Buffett’s Nevada utility
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