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West Coast Energy Regulators Renew Pledge To Curb Carbon


The developer of a proposed $180 million southern Idaho solar energy project hopes to deliver electricity by mid-2014, despite past rejections by regulators.

The developer of a proposed $180 million southern Idaho solar energy project hopes to deliver electricity by mid-2014, despite past rejections by regulators.

Flickr Creative Commons: Chandra Marsono

West Coast energy regulators met Tuesday in Seattle to renew their pledge to join forces in reducing the region’s shared carbon footprint.

The chairs of the Washington, Oregon and California utility commissions cited as one of their goals the improved integration of the West Coast’s power grids.

Washington’s peak energy draw happens when people turn up their thermostats in the winter. Meanwhile, Californians’ heavy reliance power is during the summer, when air conditioners are running, said Dave Danner, chair of the Utilities Commission of Washington.

“So they’re a summer-peaking utility. And the idea is that we have transfers of electricity up and down the coast,”  he said.

The agreement signed Tuesday is an updated version of a similar pact that dates back to 2006. Since then, all three states have launched renewable energy portfolios. Washington hopes to get 15 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. Oregon aims at 20 percent. California’s target is 33 percent.

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