Notes lower fuel costs, also cites moves to renewable energy, modernization
PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- More than 600,000 Pacific Power customers in Oregon will see welcome relief when their electric bills go down an average of about 5.2 percent in January, the company announced Monday.
The rate reduction is the result of decisions issued Dec. 18 and Oct. 30 by the Oregon Public Utilities Commission following a rigorous regulatory review of the company’s applications filed earlier in the year.
In addition to lower energy bills, customers will benefit from cleaner energy and a more resilient energy grid as they usher in a new year, Pacific Power said in a news release, which continues below..
“Pacific Power’s top priority during this difficult time is to keep prices low while providing Oregon customers with safe and reliable electricity and supporting their desire for more clean energy to power their homes and businesses,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO of Pacific Power.
“The commission’s decisions demonstrate the customer benefits derived from years of innovation and system investments the company has made since our last general rate review in 2013 to improve service, give customers more tools to manage their energy use and increase the amount of renewable power available to them through a more resilient transmission system.
"We’re proud to deliver all of these benefits while also capturing the efficiencies needed to keep our customer rates among the lowest in the nation,” Bird concluded.
In the last three years alone, the company said in a news release it "has made historic, forward-thinking, multi-billion dollar investments in renewable energy and grid upgrades that significantly increase the amount of low-cost renewable energy resources that serve customers. "
These long-term investments are contributing to immediate rate reductions and decarbonization that are projected to save customers several hundred million dollars over the life of the investments, the utility said
More than half of the 2021 rate decrease is the result of lower fuel costs and increases in federal production tax credits that result from the company’s new renewable energy investments.
The decisions, which take effect Jan. 1, 2021, also include:
- Benefits from pioneering an expanding new western energy market that allows utilities across the West to access the lowest-cost energy available in near real time, making it easy for zero fuel-cost renewable energy to go where it is needed. The Western EIM reduces customer costs while simultaneously decarbonizing the grid
- Innovative new rate programs to help our customers reduce their costs and a new, flattened rate structure that allocates costs among energy users in a more equitable and transparent manner
- A new mechanism to allow Pacific Power to recover incremental wildfire mitigation and vegetation management costs over the coming years to reduce wildfire risk
“We kept our commitment to our customers in 2017 to keep rates flat for at least three years and we are pleased to now deliver these price reductions while simultaneously making big strides in decarbonization and network resilience,” Bird continued. “On behalf of our entire team at Pacific Power, I’d like to thank all of our many partners for their collaboration in making this positive outcome possible at a time when our customers need it most.”
# # #
ABOUT PACIFIC POWER
Pacific Power provides safe and reliable electric service to more than 773,000 customers in 243 communities across Oregon, Washington and California. Pacific Power is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, serving nearly two million customers in six western states. The company is the largest regulated utility owner of wind power and the largest transmission operator in the West. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.