Idaho Power has signed a new local solar purchase agreement at one of the lowest prices on US record.
The 20-year agreement with a future solar project near Twin Falls, which will have a claimed capacity of 120 MW.
The agreement was signed with Jackpot Holdings LLC, an Idaho company that plans to complete the project by 2022. Idaho Power will initially pay less than 2.2 US cents per kilowatt, or $21.75/mWh, as well as an option to purchase the project and obtain further energy from a planned expansion, albeit then at a slightly higher price.
Idaho Power says the price is amongst the lowest on public record, and will bring low cost solar into the energy mix, making energy more cost-effective for its customers.
The Jackpot Holdings agreement will help replace coal-fired energy from the North Valmy coal-fired plant in Nevada, at which Idaho Power is ending operations.
Further benefits include improved grid management, and Idaho Power’s energy mix will help smooth any possible fluctuations in power distribution that could arise from the solar energy being added.
The location of the solar project is also ideal for the utility. Once the project is up and running, it will be connected to the same transmission line currently used for the North Valmy plant.
The move supports the utility’s goal of transitioning to clean energy by 2045. The agreement will now be submitted for approval by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission.
According to their 2018 demand-side management annual report, Idaho Power customers saved approximately 183,378 megawatt hours (MWh) of energy by participating in energy efficiency activities.