Bills and Rates

BPA Moves Closer To Provider of Choice Contracts For Post-2028

The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) on July 14 released its Provider of Choice concept paper.
Provider of Choice is BPA’s effort to establish the long-term preference power sales policy and agreements that will go into effect in 2028, which is the year that current “Regional Dialogue” contracts expire.

By statute, BPA must offer contracts for the sale of federal power at the request of regional preference customers. BPA is limited to a maximum 20-year contract term inclusive of any revisions, extensions or renewals. 

Based on feedback from customers that the current power sales agreements generally work well, the Provider of Choice concept paper maintains key elements of current contracts, BPA noted. BPA is proposing to build off of the existing Regional Dialogue contracts.

BPA also proposes to offer load following, slice and slice/block product options with critical updates, introducing these concepts as a starting point for future product discussions.

“With the concept paper, BPA describes its flexibilities and receptiveness to product adjustments and new products to help customers meet their needs in the rapidly changing energy industry,” BPA said.

“We’re developing new contracts against a highly dynamic backdrop of energy-related issues that have potential to impact future agreements,” said Kim Thompson, vice president of Northwest Requirements Marking. “Throughout this process, we’ve worked hard to assess customer positions in the areas of capacity, carbon and many other policy arenas.”

BPA will hold a set of meetings to gather stakeholder feedback on the concepts and elements introduced in its paper.

The first workshop is scheduled for July 21. A series of policy meetings will continue throughout the remainder of FY 2022 and into FY 2023. These ongoing public workshops will inform policy development and provide opportunities for customer input, questions and comments, BPA said.

It noted that provider of choice is just one of the major processes under a post-2028 Initiative. Other efforts under this umbrella include a Residential Exchange Program, development of the subsequent rate design (rate methodology), and conservation (energy efficiency).