Monthly Archives: February 2014

Oregon Senate passes bill to protect state renewable energy mandates

By: Ted Sikinger
The Oregonian

A bill designed to shield Oregon’s renewable energy mandates from a potentially game-changing ballot measure sailed through the Senate’s Business and Transportation Committee Tuesday, even as opponents called it a back-room deal hatched to benefit industry insiders and ignore average citizens.

Oregon’s renewable energy standard requires “large” utilities to meet 25 percent of demand with renewable power by 2025, and includes lower targets for smaller utilities. The law is one of the defining legacies of former Gov. Ted Kulongoski, and is a darling of environmentalists, renewable developers and even large utilities, who are investing heavily in new wind and solar facilities to meet the requirements.

Backers say the law has been effective at spurring development of clean energy and has created jobs and enhanced tax revenues in the process. Utilities also claim those resources were least-cost choices to meet demand, though they were based on natural gas price forecasts that proved far too high. Read more

Posted in Northwest Hydropower News, Wind Power | Comments Off on Oregon Senate passes bill to protect state renewable energy mandates

Swan Lake pumped-storage plant alive

By: Lacey Jarrell
Herald and News

A hydroelectric project that could generate enough electricity to power 600,000 homes is still on track for completion in 2020.

The facility is slated for construction at the 5,200-acre Jespersen-Edgewood Ranch in Swan Lake Valley.

According to Joe Eberhardt, EDF Renewable Energy director of hydropower for the West region, the Swan Lake North pumped-storage hydroelectric project is in a preliminary licensing phase with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The licensing process usually takes about three years, he said. EDF began managing the project last year. Read more

Posted in Hydropower, Northwest Hydropower News, Relicensing | Comments Off on Swan Lake pumped-storage plant alive

Floating wind farm cleared for Oregon coast

By: Gosia Wozniacka
Associated Press

PORTLAND – A Seattle company is being given the green light to develop plans to build the West Coast’s first offshore wind energy farm – five floating turbines off Oregon’s Coos Bay, federal and state officials said Wednesday.

The 30-megawatt pilot project was announced at a press conference by Gov. John Kitzhaber, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Director Tommy Beaudreau.

Though offshore wind farms are an expensive source of energy, proponents say they could bring clean, efficient electricity, create new jobs and stimulate the economy.

“It’s not going to be economic out of the gate,” Beaudreau said. But “it’s important for Oregon to be on the edge of what could be a huge industry in the future.” Read more

Posted in Hydropower, Northwest Hydropower News, Wind Power | Comments Off on Floating wind farm cleared for Oregon coast

Seattle company plans offshore wind-energy farm off Oregon’s Coos Bay

Plans for a wind energy farm off the Oregon coast are to be developed by the Seattle firm Principle Power.

By: Gosia Wozniacka
The Associated Press – The Seattle Times

PORTLAND — A Seattle company is being given the green light to develop plans to build the West Coast’s first offshore wind energy farm — five floating turbines off Oregon’s Coos Bay, federal and state officials said Wednesday.

The 30-megawatt pilot project was announced at a news conference by Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Director Tommy Beaudreau.

Though offshore wind farms are an expensive source of energy, proponents say they could bring clean, efficient electricity, create jobs and stimulate the economy.

“It’s not going to be economic out of the gate,” Beaudreau said. But “it’s important for Oregon to be on the edge of what could be a huge industry in the future.” Read more

Posted in Northwest Hydropower News, Wind Power | Comments Off on Seattle company plans offshore wind-energy farm off Oregon’s Coos Bay