Speak up on Regional Power Plan

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The Northwest Power and Conservation Council has released a draft 20-year energy plan that will guide energy resource decisions in Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon. It’s crucially important that the Council, which is composed of two members from each of these four states, supports a final plan that prioritizes energy efficiency and renewable energy. Distributed solar resources can play an important role in serving our region’s electricity needs, but it’s important for the Council to hear from you.

Every five years the Council updates its long-range energy plan guiding the deployment of electricity resources in the Bonneville Power Administration service territory, which includes NorthWestern Energy and western Montana electric cooperatives.

The Draft 7th Power Plan is available for public comment until December 18th. The final plan will be released in February 2016.

In the 7th Plan, the Council needs to maintain the draft proposal’s endorsement of solar resources, including the proposed deployment of cost-effective distributed solar PV and solar generation coupled with battery storage. The final plan must also maintain the draft plan’s core energy efficiency targets and demand response priority as key strategies to save consumers money, improve reliability, and reduce carbon pollution.

It is crucial for Council members to hear from Montanans. Please take a few minutes to contact the Council and let them know that you support a final Plan that:

  1. prioritizes energy efficiency, and
  2. sets aggressive targets for deployment of renewable energy and storage technology.
  3. You can contact the Council directly using this online form.

    You can also share your comments in person with the Council at public hearings in Kalispell and Missoula:

    Kalispell public hearing: Monday, November 9th, 6:30-8:00 pm
    Flathead Electric Cooperative board room

    Missoula public hearing: Tuesday, November 10th, 6:30-8:00 pm
    Double Tree Inn- Blackfoot Room

    Thanks for all you do—

    Ben Brouwer, Policy Director
    Montana Renewable Energy Association

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    Learn more:
    Draft 7th Power Plan
    NW Energy Coalition’s summary of key issues in the 7th Power Plan