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News Release
Commission Acknowledges PGE Long-Range Energy Plan with Boardman Closure
Nov. 19, 2010 (2010-27) (LC 48)
Salem, OR.  The Oregon Public Utility Commission has acknowledged Portland General Electric’s (PGE) Integrated Resource Plan (IRP)—a 20-year plan that describes in detail how the utility intends to meet future resource needs with the least cost and risk to customers.
The plan includes closing the Boardman coal-fired plant by the end of 2020 in order to follow Oregon Regional Haze Plan and Oregon Mercury Utility Rule standards.
“There are a lot of moving pieces here, but we need a reasonable amount of time for replacing energy from the plant that is in the best interest of ratepayers and also complies with environmental laws,” Commission Chairman Ray Baum said. “This acknowledgement includes the flexibility for us to adjust to a moving regulatory target.” We conclude the 2020 closure is in the best interest of ratepayers.”
It is unclear whether the Environmental Quality Commission will adopt the 2020 closure. If the 2020 closure date is not approved by environmental regulators, PGE must change its proposal in its next update to the Commission.
The Commission acknowledged the 200-mile long Cascade Crossing Transmission project that would connect PGE’s Boardman and Coyote Springs plants to the southern portion of its service territory. The Commission directed PGE to provide a thorough cost-benefit analysis and assessment of the project in its next IRP. This includes updated estimates of construction costs, progress made toward securing partners, and estimates of transmission commitments. 
The IRP plan also addresses:
  • Energy efficiency
  • Renewable energy requirements
  • Wind integration
  • Customer incentives to reduce energy usage
Utilities must file their resource plans with the Commission for acknowledgment every two years. The plan analyzes different types of risk such as renewable energy credit prices, natural gas prices, carbon emission costs, load growth, and conservation.
Acknowledgment of the IRP does not ensure the company will be able to recover costs in customer rates. The Commission will make those decisions in rate cases.
In developing the 2009 plan, PGE worked with groups representing environmental interests, major industrial customers, state representatives, Commission staff, and others.
PGE must file its next IRP with the Commission no later than November 2012.