Powering Strong Communities

Omaha Public Power District Board Pushes Generation Plan Vote to August

The Omaha Public Power District Board of Directors moved a vote on a proposed near-term generation resource plan to its August meeting.

The July board meetings previously were canceled.

Following discussion at its all-committees meeting, the proposal was removed from the list of action items for a June 15 board meeting.

By moving the vote, the board’s Systems Committee has more time to further evaluate the upcoming planned work in the context of anticipated revisions to Strategic Directive (SD) 9: Integrated Systems Planning, OPPD said.

During the all-committees meeting, Systems Committee Chair Craig Moody expressed gratitude for the solid resource planning work that went into the utility’s recommendation. He noted that any technical questions board members had have been answered.

OPPD’s solution to meet the near-future generation needs of its communities would require an estimated capital investment of more than $2 billion and would nearly double the district’s nameplate capacity, or maximum rated generation output, by 2030.

“The generation growth reflected in this plan is unprecedented,” said OPPD President and CEO Javier Fernandez in a statement. “We understand the board’s desire to move forward with a thoughtful framework that supports both the portfolio execution and provides mechanisms for governance and accountability. We will work closely with the board as we lead up to the anticipated vote in August.”

OPPD remains committed to its Power with Purpose generation expansion projects. To date, these include Turtle Creek Station (450 megawatts), Standing Bear Lake Station (150 MW), and Platteview Solar (81 MW), with more renewables coming.

In addition to this, the utility proposes adding:

  • 1,000 to 1,500 MW of renewables (wind and solar), which includes PwP generation that has yet to be sourced
  • Up to 125 MW of battery storage (four-hour equivalent)
  • 600 to 950 MW of natural gas-fueled resources
  • 32 MW or more of demand response (shifting or shedding electricity)
  • Approximately 320 MW of added fuel capacity and fuel oil storage at existing generation facilities to provide additional accredited winter capacity and system resiliency)

While this resource plan will take approximately a decade to execute, when all the resources are operating, it is estimated that more than 90% of new load would be served by renewable sources with the recommended additions, according to OPPD’s current projections.

The utility remains committed to previously announced plans for North Omaha Station, including retiring its older units (1-3), which were converted from coal to natural gas in 2016, and converting units 4-5 to natural gas-only fuel. The only change recommended at that site is to potentially add battery storage resources.