Chelan County Public Utility District, Puget Sound Energy Enter Hydropower Contract

Puget Sound Energy and Chelan County Public Utility District on Feb. 7 executed a contract for hydropower from the PUD’s two projects on the Columbia River.

The 20-year contract will increase Puget Sound Energy’s carbon-free resources toward its future renewable energy goals, as well as contributes flexible capacity to identified needs in Washington State, Chelan and Puget Sound Energy noted.

The contract was negotiated over the past 18 months and includes both carbon-free energy attributes provided by hydropower as well as flexible capacity to help PSE meet peak energy needs during high customer usage times.

The competitively priced contract provides Puget Sound Energy with 25% of the output from the PUD’s Rock Island and Rocky Reach hydropower projects from 2031 to 2051. Its current contracts with Chelan PUD, expiring in 2026 and 2031, provide a portion of the output from the two Columbia River projects.

Chelan PUD offers a mix of short-term market-based and long-term cost-based products. Both types of contracts are based on selling a “slice” of Chelan’s hydropower output.

The value of hydropower has increased as a carbon-free renewable source of energy, Chelan and Puget Sound Energy said. Those environmental attributes are in demand as companies look to satisfy new regulatory requirements through Washington State’s Climate Commitment Act and Clean Energy Transformation Act.