When BPA leaders told us they wanted to visit and hear our views, we pounced on the chance to have our say!
‘Central Lincoln loves energy efficiency and offering cost-effective programs that help our customers lower their bills is extremely important to us.’ That was one of the key messages that Central Lincoln’s General Manager Debra Smith and Energy Services Manager Wade Carey delivered last month during the Bonneville Power Administration’s Energy-Efficiency Road Trip that came to Newport.
Bonneville (BPA) is a federal power marketing agency responsible for selling hydropower produced by Columbia River dams to consumer-owned utilities in the Northwest. Central Lincoln purchases all of the power we need to serve our customers from BPA and the cost of that power is far and away our largest expense item.
About nine months ago, BPA began a process called “Focus 2028” designed to insure that power costs are affordable when long-term contracts that govern its relationship with local utilities end. One of the areas of discussion has been energy efficiency – funding levels, program offerings, and administrative flexibility.
“When Bonneville asked if we would host the Road Trip, I saw it as a tremendous opportunity to show off the beautiful Oregon Coast, as well as the innovative projects that Wade and others have been able to complete for Central Lincoln’s customers,” says Debra. Central Lincoln hosted about 20 visitors from Portland, Montana, Washington, the Willamette Valley and even Oregon’s South Coast. The group included the BPA Administrator, Public Power Council members and staff, as well as general and senior managers from Bonneville and other Northwest utilities. The group heard about Central Lincoln’s conservation voltage regulation project, toured a completed Energy Smart Industrial Project at Rogue Brewery and heard about Oregon State University’s major expansion plans from Dr. Jack Barth, Executive Director of OSU’s Marine Studies Initiative.
“Bonneville is an important partner in delivering the energy efficiency projects our customers rely on to help manage their energy costs,” offers Wade. “But it’s critical that BPA’s programs are administered efficiently and meet the needs of our coastal communities. Increased flexibility will allow us to do the most with the dollars available, and we appreciated having the opportunity to share our thoughts directly with BPA and others.”
If you own a business and would like to see if there’s an energy efficiency program that can help you save electricity, please call our Energy Experts at 888-883-9879. Residential customers are encouraged to check out our home savings programs on our website at clpud.org – click on “Energy Efficiency & Programs.”