Chronicle Journal: Finance

Avista submits 2021 Electric Integrated Resource Plan

SPOKANE, Wash., April 01, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Avista Utilities, an operating division of Avista Corp. (NYSE: AVA), is planning to reduce carbon-emitting resources from its portfolio in alignment with the company’s clean electricity goal announced in 2019. In its 2021 Electric Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) filed today with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission and the Idaho Public Utility Commission, Avista is projecting a much cleaner generation mix.

The 2021 IRP shows Avista has adequate resources between owned and contractually controlled generation, when combined with conservation and market purchases, to meet customer needs through 2025. New renewable energy, energy storage, demand response, energy efficiency, and upgrades to existing hydropower and biomass plants are integral to the plan.

“We evaluate many options to find the ideal strategy to serve our customers that balances cost, reliability and the environment,” said Jason Thackston, Avista’s senior vice president of energy resources. “We are pleased to have a plan that builds on our already strong commitment to the environment.”

Avista is modeling a future that reflects both Clean Energy Transformation Act (CETA) requirements in Washington and its own clean electricity goals. In 2019, Avista announced its goal to serve its customers with 100 percent clean electricity by 2045 and to have a carbon-neutral supply of electricity by the end of 2027. Fifty-five percent of Avista’s current generating potential is clean hydropower, biomass, wind and solar.

Some highlights of the 2021 IRP include:

  • The resource strategy meets nearly 78 percent of Avista’s corporate clean electricity goal to provide customers with 100 percent net clean electricity by 2027 at competitive prices.
  • There is a new chapter in this IRP addressing energy equity and plans to form an Equity Advisory Group in 2021 to further engage vulnerable and highly impacted communities.
  • Avista is currently concluding its 2020 Renewable Request for Proposals process, and any contract that is executed through that process will modify Avista’s resulting resource needs.
  • Notwithstanding the 2020 Renewable Request for Proposals process, the first new renewable resource identified in the IRP is in 2023 as a wind project located in Montana. Additional Montana wind is identified in 2024 and 2028. The location of the new wind resources would diversify and complement Avista’s existing wind portfolio and would be acquired through a future competitive selection process.
  • Avista anticipates customer load growth of 0.3 percent per year, similar to the projected growth rate in the 2020 IRP.

IRP Process

Each IRP is a thoroughly researched and data-driven document identifying a resource strategy to meet customer needs while balancing costs and risk measures with environmental goals and mandates. Avista’s professional energy analysts use sophisticated modeling tools and input from over 75 participants to develop each plan. The participants in the public process include customers, environmental organizations and business groups, elected officials and utility commission staff. Avista also hosted a public participation meeting, which more than 150 customers attended in February. The plan is typically updated every two years.

More information on Avista’s diverse energy mix and the IRP is available at myavista.com/IRP.

About Avista Utilities
Avista Corp. is an energy company involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is our operating division that provides electric service to 400,000 customers and natural gas to 367,000 customers. Our service territory covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.7 million. AERC is an Avista subsidiary that, through its subsidiary AEL&P, provides retail electric service to 17,000 customers in the city and borough of Juneau, Alaska. Our stock is traded under the ticker symbol “AVA”. For more information about Avista, please visit www.avistacorp.com.

This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding the company’s current expectations. Forward-looking statements are all statements other than historical facts. Such statements speak only as of the date of the news release and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the company’s control, which could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations. These risks and uncertainties include, in addition to those discussed herein, all of the factors discussed in the company’s and the Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2020, and its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2020.

SOURCE: Avista Corporation

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Contact:                                                                                 
Media: Annie Gannon (509) 495-2515, annie.gannon@avistacorp.com
Avista 24/7 Media Access (509) 495-4174
Investors: John Wilcox (509) 495-4171 john.wilcox@avistacorp.com  


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