Why does Western promote the use of renewable energy?
Encouraging our customers to improve energy efficiency and use renewable resources helps them get the most value from their resources. Western maintains the Energy Services under authority of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (42 USC 7275) and Western's Energy Planning and Management Program (10 CFR Part 905). Western?s Energy Services Program offers a variety of tools and resources to help customers in this area. We also publish a bimonthly online newsletter, the Energy Services Bulletin and the weekly Green Power and Market Research News to provide information to customers and end-users, featuring demand-side-management, energy-related technology, strategic marketing, renewable resources and energy-based community development.
What are Integrated Resource Plans and why does Western require customers to submit them?
Integrated Resource Plans are tools to help customers plan for new energy resources that evaluate the full range of alternatives, including new generating capacity, power purchases, energy conservation and efficiency, cogeneration and district heating and cooling applications and renewable energy resources, to provide adequate and reliable service to a customer?s electric consumers.
The Energy Policy Act of 1992 requires Western?s customers to evaluate supply-side, demand-side and renewable resource options as part of their resource planning efforts. Western's Energy Planning and Management Program encourages planning and efficient electric energy use and requires customers to develop Integrated Resource Plans. Regulations revised in 2000, allow for more customer flexibility in choosing how to comply. For example, customers with total energy usage or sales of less than 25 gigawatthours per year who are not members of joint action agencies or member-based associations can submit a less complicated Small Customer Plan. Customers must submit annual progress reports and new integrated resource plans every five years, but they may now submit them individually or cooperatively when they belong to member-based associations.