Portland General Electric may modify its proposal to build a new transmission line from Boardman to the Willamette Valley. The new plan would eliminate the need for more than hundred miles of power lines slated to be built across the Cascade Range.
PGE says it’s now in talks with the Bonneville Power Administration about the possibility of diverting the route through a yet-to-be built substation near Maupin, south of The Dalles.
PGE spokesman Steve Corson says from there the electricity would make its way to existing lines owned by BPA.
"Now, we’d need to do some enhancements to some of BPA’s equipment to take advantage of this new line," says Corson. "But the upshot of it is that it’s got the potential to both serve our original purpose in bringing new transmission capacity into our system and at the same time, enhance BPA’s ability to serve its customers as well."
PGE's Corson says the two utilities still have a number of details to work out before a final agreement can be reached.
The announcement has drawn praise from the Portland environmental group Bark. The group has been critical of the project for its potential impact on forests and wildlife.