Seattle City Light Seeks New, Renewable Energy

Seattle City Light is actively pursuing opportunities to purchase a total of 200,000 Megawatt-hours of new renewable energy.

Seattle City Light is actively pursuing opportunities to purchase a total of 200,000 Megawatt-hours 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.  While City Light has more than 90 percent of its power portfolio in renewable hydroelectricity, it does not qualify for the standards set in I-937.

“Seattle City Light is a leader in the delivery of low-cost, reliable, environmentally responsible electricity and we want to expand our new, renewable energy resources portfolio,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “We look forward to hearing from the generators who can help us to achieve that goal and hit the targets set by Initiative 937.”

The 200,000 Megawatt-hours of renewable energy, and/or renewable energy credits (RECs), City Light hopes to acquire could come from one large project or several smaller projects.

City Light’s preference is to acquire new renewable energy resources that meet the baseload needs of our commercial, industrial and residential customers. This solicitation 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 .

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.