A new source of power

Avista proposes agreement with landfill waste to energy project

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Avista Corporation is asking the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to approve a purchase power agreement with Kootenai Electric Cooperative's landfill gas generating facility near Bellgrove, 15 miles south of Coeur d'Alene.

The 3.2-megawatt project is a qualifying facility under the provisions of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act. PURPA requires that electric utilities offer to buy power produced from qualifying small power producers or cogenerators.

The rate to be paid small-power producers is to be equal to the cost the utility avoids if it would have had to generate the power itself or purchase it from another source.

Under the agreement, Avista would purchase the project's output at the lower of either 1) 85 percent of the market rate or 2) the avoided-cost rate for PURPA projects smaller than 10 average megawatts.

If approved, the contract becomes effective immediately. Kootenai Electric may terminate the agreement at any time by providing Avista 30 days' written notice.

The commission is taking public comment on the proposed sales agreement through Feb. 8. Info: www.puc.idaho.gov and clicking on "Comments & Questions About a Case." Fill in the case number (AVU-E-12-01) and enter your comments.

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