BPA Announces Power Rate Increase

Every two years, the Bonneville Power Administration conducts a formal process known as a rate case to ensure its projected revenue from the electricity it sells will cover the expenses it incurs. The amount BPA charges must cover payments on federal dams, building and maintaining transmission lines, fish and wildlife mitigation, energy-efficiency programs and other obligations required by federal and state laws.

Effective October 1, 2017, BPA’s wholesale power rates will go up between 6.5 and 8.5 percent. The rate increase stems from higher costs to operate and maintain the federal hydroelectric system, high costs to fund existing long-term agreements for the fish and wildlife mitigation program and reduced revenues from surplus power sales due to low market prices. It also includes an increase to cover lost revenue when the federal dams are mandated to spill water over the dams to allow young salmon to easily travel downstream.

BPA supplies 90 percent of Northern Lights’ power. An increase in BPA rates makes a huge impact on the expenses of our co-op. We are analyzing the effect this increase will have on our costs. The NLI Board of Directors will determine whether an increase in our members’ rates will be necessary to maintain our financial strength.

I assure you Northern Lights is fully engaged in the BPA rate-setting process that leads to the decisions that ultimately affect your rates. Providing safe and reliable service at affordable rates is at the core of our commitment to you. We are continually working to reduce costs that we control directly and keep those costs outside of our control as fair and reasonable as possible.

Unclaimed Capital Credits

Be sure to check out the insert in the middle of this month’s Ruralite. It includes a list of members who have unclaimed capital credits that we do not have current contact information for. Please call (888) 586-8444 if you see your name.

I hope you enjoy the last few weeks of summer!

Annie Terracciano
General Manager