BPA Identifies $2B In Funds For Transmission Projects

The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) has identified up to $2 billion in major projects for which it will use American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds. To date, BPA has spent $174.4 million on these projects, which will enhance transmission and hydro system infrastructure, create hundreds of new jobs, implement energy efficiency and construct fish hatcheries.

‘BPA's Recovery Act projects will create hundreds of good-paying jobs and help reduce carbon pollution by bringing even more renewable energy to the region,’ said Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy Daniel Poneman, who recently visited the new McNary-John Day power line.

Construction crews have completed approximately 30 miles of line and towers and constructed or improved 54 line miles of access roads along the McNary-John Day line. When completed in early 2012, the power line will allow BPA to provide firm transmission service for an additional 495 MW of wind energy in the Northwest.

The projects identified for ARRA funding are being developed now or are scheduled to be initiated or undergo environmental review in the next two years.

Transmission enhancements include four major reinforcement projects totaling approximately $1 billion, including the McNary-John Day line. Combined, these transmission-line projects would add more than 220 miles of lines to the Northwest transmission grid. Three of these projects are currently undergoing extensive public and environmental processes. BPA will fund additional work totaling approximately $585 million of upgrades, additions and replacements to its existing transmission system.

The proposed transmission enhancements also include BPA's recently announced I-5 Corridor Reinforcement Project, which is currently undergoing environmental review. If built, that line would meet growing local and regional energy demands and help bolster BPA's transmission system to accommodate energy deliveries, including wind power deliveries.

If BPA builds all three lines under consideration, in addition to the McNary-John Day project, the lines would allow BPA to provide firm transmission service to about 3,881 MW worth of requests for new transmission service, including 3,138 MW of additional wind integration.

SOURCE: The Bonneville Power Administration Â

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