Oregon Commission Leaves Competitive Bidding up to PGE Management, But Promises to Scrutinize PGE’s Decisions During Cost Recovery

On August 13, 2018, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (OPUC) adopted a Stipulation capping the size of each of PGE’s five proposed energy storage projects and resolving the one litigated issue—whether PGE should be required to allow third-party bidding during the request for proposals (RFP) for its utility- scale storage project at the Coffee Creek substation. While the OPUC declined to require PGE to allow third-party ownership options, it confirmed that PGE must address the ownership issues as part of its future filings on the Coffee Creek project and warned that it planned to review PGE’s decisions carefully in any future rate proceeding.   [Read more…]

Oregon Commission Denies Pre-Operational QF Capacity Changes

On August 2, 2018, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (Commission) issued an order denying three qualifying facilities (QFs) under the Public Utility Regulatory Policy Act of 1978 (PURPA) the ability to change their nameplate capacity after contract execution but prior to commencing commercial operations. The Commission interpreted the language in Portland General Electric Company’s (PGE’s) standard power purchase agreement as prohibitive of either an increase or decrease to nameplate capacity prior to commercial operation.   [Read more…]

Oregon Commission Requires PacifiCorp to Purchase Renewable Power from Large Independently Owned Generators

On April 19, 2018, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (Oregon PUC) rejected PacifiCorp’s proposed methodology for setting the avoided cost rates for larger qualifying facilities (QF), and required PacifiCorp to use a methodology that is more favorable to renewable QFs.   [Read more…]

Oregon PUC Approves PGE’s Transportation Electrification Program

On February 16, 2018, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (Oregon Commission) adopted an opposed settlement and allowed Portland General Electric Company (PGE) to undertake three pilot programs designed to accelerate transportation electrification, including increased PGE ownership of charging stations. The Oregon Commission, however, modified provisions in the stipulation addressing future meetings and processes related to developing specific learnings from PGE’s pilot programs to allow broader participation.   [Read more…]

Oregon PUC Exercises Primary Jurisdiction Over Executed PURPA Contract

On January 25, 2018, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (Oregon Commission) elected to take jurisdiction over a contract dispute between a qualifying facility (QF) Pacific Northwest Solar (PNW Solar) and Portland General Electric Company (PGE). The Oregon Commission became one of the only state agencies to conclude that it should resolve post-contract execution decisions and breaks from almost forty years of Oregon court case law in which QF contract disputes were resolved by the courts rather than an administrative agency.   [Read more…]