Seattle City Light Seeks New Renewable Energy Resources

Seattle City Light is actively pursuing opportunities to purchase up to 50 Megawatts of new renewable energy.

Seattle City Light is actively pursuing opportunities to purchase up to 50 Megawatts of new renewable energy.

If successful, such purchases will help City Light on its way to meeting the new, renewable energy requirements of voter-approved Initiative 937. The initiative requires large utilities in Washington to have renewable energy resources developed after 1997 make up at least 15 percent of their energy portfolios by 2020.

Such purchases also support the city’s Climate Action Now Initiative, which seeks to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions tied to climate change.

“Seattle City Light is committed to providing low-cost, reliable, environmentally responsible electricity to meet the needs of our customers,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “We look forward to hearing from the generators of new renewable energy resources who can help us continue to achieve that goal and hit the targets set by I-937.”

The 50 Megawatts of renewable energy City Light is targeting could come from one large project, several smaller projects or from a purchase of renewable energy credits.

City Light’s preference is to acquire new renewable energy resources that meet the baseload needs of our commercial, industrial and residential customers. This search will be by competitive bid, not least cost, which means the shape, capacity, seasonality and other factors associated with the energy resources will be considered. A request for proposals released this month outlines the municipally owned utility’s specifications and acquisition process. It is available at http://www.seattle.gov/light/News/RFI_RFP/rfp_ra.asp and on the city’s e-bid Web site at https://www.ebidexchange.com/Default.aspx?cid=eb31bf6e-250d-4d1d-abfb-37cb20108045 .

City Light already contracts for renewable energy with several providers, including wind energy, biomass and landfill gas.

In 2005, City Light became the first large utility in the United States to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. It remains the only large utility in the country to reach that status.

Seattle City Light is the ninth largest public electric utility in the United States.  It has the lowest cost customer rates of any urban utility, providing reliable, renewable and environmentally responsible power to nearly 1 million Seattle-area residents.