During this week’s all-committees meeting for the OPPD Board of Directors, utility leaders discussed resource planning work. OPPD must submit an Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) to the Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) every five years as part of a long-term contract to receive hydroelectric power. The utility uses comprehensive decision-support tools to evaluate resource options for the IRP, which serves as a road map for future generation and power purchases.
This latest IRP will take into account recently released findings from OPPD’s latest portfolio modeling process to move the utility toward its goal of net-zero carbon by 2050. The plan also includes the district’s Power with Purpose project to add up to 600 megawatts (MW) of solar generation with natural gas backup to power our growing communities, as well as the retirement of North Omaha Station units 1-3 and repowering of units 4-5 to run on natural gas.
Board officer positions for 2022
During today’s monthly board meeting, directors elected officer positions for the coming year, opting to retain the positions held in 2021. They also confirmed standing committee assignments for 2022.
Powering Our Future At Nebraska Public Power District, we’re continually transforming how we do business to power a sustainable future for Nebraska, our customers, our Wholesale Partners and their customers while keeping electricity affordable, reliable, and resilient.
Lincoln Electric System (LES), the public power utility serving greater Lincoln, Nebraska has set up a microgrid with 5 MW of load to serve critical facilities. The cost? Zero. Themicrogrid in downtown Lincoln is based around an existing duel-fuel, 29-MW generating unit and a substation and its infrastructure, according to Scott Benson, LES manager of resource and transmission planning. The project didn’t require any new equipment or a microgrid controller.
The US Department of Energy is preparing a publication that highlights the J Street microgrid project as an example of how to use existing infrastructure to provide new community benefits, [Scott Benson, LES manager of resource and transmission planning] said. Read more here.
Mary Harding elected NPPD Board Chair for 2021 Columbus, Neb. – Mary Harding of Plattsmouth was elected as Chair of Nebraska Public Power District’s Board of Directors for 2021 following that body’s annual election of officers Wednesday in Columbus. Also elected were Jerry Chlopek of Columbus as first vice chair, Melissa Freelend of Kearney as second vice chair, and Ed Schrock of Elm Creek as secretary. NPPD Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Traci Bender was elected treasurer.
LINCOLN — Over the last decade, Lincoln Electric System has made great stridesin transitioning its energy production portfolio to more sustainable sources. From 2010 to 2019, the community-owned utility increased renewable energy production from the equivalent of 10% of retail sales in 2010 to 46% in 2019, simultaneously reducing CO2 emissions by 42% and the carbon intensity of its energy produced by 38%.
Along with transitioning to more renewable resources, LES has also promoted sustainability through customer-facing programs like incentivized rates for customer-owned solar, virtual net metering, allowing customers tobuy “virtual” panelsat the local community solar facility, and by offering multiple energy efficiency and demand reduction incentives and opportunities. Both distributed generation and load reduction are important parts of maintaining sustainability for an electric utility, and LES has been ahead of the curve on implementing many of these actions.
OPPD’S Decarbonization Study:Pathways to Decarbonization, OPPD Community Connect What is decarbonization? Simply, it’s the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, commonly referred to as our carbon footprint. Although carbon dioxide (CO2) occurs naturally in the Earth’s atmosphere, human activities over the last century have significantly increased levels of greenhouse gases. These include burning fossil fuels for energy and transportation, and removing trees (deforestation) to enable other land uses, such as clearing rainforests for agricultural purposes.
Check out utilities’ carbon reduction commitments on this interactive map: SEPA’S Utility Carbon Reduction Tracker: Omaha Public Power District’s Emission Reduction Goal: Net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.