Hydropower auction yields $64 million

Grant Public Utility District said it raised more than $64 million from its fifth annual power auction held Nov. 5, 2009.

The auction offered two blocks of renewable hydropower from the Priest Rapids Project on the Columbia River. Powerex Corp. bought a 12.43-percent block for $43.7 million while PacifiCorp purchased a six-percent block for $20.3 million.

Both companies will be allocated the power from January through December 2010. The amount of power each company receives during the 12-month period will depend primarily on Columbia River flows.

This is the fifth year of the Grant PUD power auction. It is the only block of power offered at auction by the utility. The action was established in response to a 1998 order from the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that required the utility to sell a reasonable portion of its firm and non-firm power generation based on market principles.

“This contract adds competitively priced, flexible resources to our energy portfolio and will benefit our customers throughout the Northwest,” said Stefan Bird, PacifiCorp’s senior vice president for commercial and trading.

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