In keeping with an earlier released 10-year integrated resource plan (IRP), Avista Utilities Monday issued a request for information (RFI) to identify new potential energy-saving programs. The utility hopes the ideas generated by the RFI will lead to a formal request for proposals (RFP) process to line up new conservation efforts. Responses to the RFI are due April 24.

As part of the Avista IRP, an additional 69 MW of conservation programs is targeted by 2016, along with 480 MW of wind and other renewables, 52 MW from upgrading existing utility power plants, and 250 MW of coal-based generation. In addition, Avista is developing a natural gas IRP.

“This RFI is part of our ongoing commitment to seek cost-effective energy resources to serve our customers and to help them get the most value out of their energy dollars,” said Jon Powell, Avista’s partnership solutions manager. A main subsidiary of Spokane, WA-based Avista Corp., the utility currently “manages a resource portfolio intended to stabilize prices and minimize risks for our customers while being good stewards of the environment,” Powell said.

Using both the earlier power IRP and the developing natural gas-focused plan, Avista will base its conservation RFP on the ideas developed in the initial RFI process, which has the objective of coming up with “valuable energy alternatives” for customers and “securing the most economical resource options” in the utility conservation portfolio, Powell said. “All proposals will be evaluated based on their cost and overall usefulness to Avista.”

Avista’s RFI can be found on its website:

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