Idaho Power

A new measure backed by Idaho Power Co. would allow business owners to resell public utility electricity to electric car drivers.

The House State Affairs Committee voted Tuesday to introduce a bill permitting companies to buy the electricity from a public utility and then resell it to charge electric car batteries.

Rich Hahn from Idaho Power says that current state law prevents reselling electricity provided by a public utility. This means businesses are footing the bill for having electric car charging stations.

Bookhaven National Laboratory / Flickr Creative Commons

The company that provides most of southern Idaho with its electricity is ready to incorporate solar power into its portfolio for the first time. Idaho Power's foray into solar will be relatively small.

Currently about half of Idaho Power’s electricity comes from hydroelectric dams. A little more than a third comes from coal-burning power plants in neighboring states. There’s some natural gas, and about 7 percent comes from privately-generated, renewable sources, mostly wind. None of it, though, is solar. 

Courtesy Idaho Power

This, folks, is a 470-pound sturgeon that was recently reeled in, tagged, and released by Idaho Power. The 10-foot-long female was caught in Hells Canyon on the Snake River. Did we mention this fish is 75 years old? That means she was born in 1939, when Franklin D. Roosevelt was President.

photonut-mi / Flickr

The last few days have been scorchers, and the National Weather Service says the heat will continue at least into next week. Everyone is looking for ways to stay cool.

One spot that should always provide respite is your home. Idaho Power has these tips on how to keep your house cool, while saving a little money on air conditioning.

Idaho Power Co. can spend tens of millions to clean up its Wyoming coal-fired power plant and expect ratepayers to cover the project's cost, but regulators want quarterly updates on whether these emission-control investments continue to make sense as federal environmental rules change.

Announced Monday by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission, the decision aims to ensure Idaho's biggest utility isn't locked into the estimated $130 million project if alternatives to coal emerge as better for ratepayers.

Idaho Power, LaMont Keen
Courtesy of Idaho Power

Idaho Power Co. Chief Executive Officer J. LaMont Keen is retiring at year's end, to be replaced by the company's chief financial officer. Darrel Anderson will step in for Keen Dec. 31.

The state's largest utility made the announcement on Thursday. In a press release, the chairman of the board of directors of IDACORP and Idaho Power, Robert Tinstman, said the company is grateful to LaMont for his more than 39 years at Idaho Power. Keen has led the company since 2006.

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

The Bureau of Land Management Tuesday approved most of a 990-mile-long power line that's being built on public land. But a section of the line, about 295 miles in Idaho, were deferred. That means the BLM will hold off on the OK for that area until stakeholders along the line’s route can come to a consensus.

The Gateway West project will run from Wyoming across southern Idaho. It's an effort between Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power.

Radio, transmitter status
Flickr Creative Commons

Update 11:15 a.m.:  Idaho Power was able to maintain power at CSI during its maintenance work which kept Boise State Public Radio programming on the air.

Original Post: Due to a scheduled power outage at CSI, listeners in the Wood River Valley, Magic Valley, and in Jackpot, Nevada may experience disruptions in regular programming.

The power outage is scheduled to begin at 8:00 a.m. today. Idaho Power crews will be working to replace the main power lines and hope to have power restored by noon today.

Idaho Power

UPDATE 9:40 a.m.: Idaho Power reports power was restored to the Lester Creek area and the Anderson Ranch Bluffs subdivision on Wednesday afternoon after the Elk Complex burned poles. Fall Creek and Pine should have power by Thursday evening, while the area north of Featherville is still too dangerous to access.

Areas near Mountain Home and Prairie got electricity back on Wednesday as well. The Pony Complex had destroyed 37 power poles in that area.

Bureau of Land Management

Today is the last day you can comment on the final environmental impact statement for a 1,000 mile long power line. 

Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power want to build what's called the Gateway West Transmission Line to add power capacity. The project would cross most of southern Idaho.  The Bureau of Land Management released the Final Environmental Impact Statement, or EIS two months ago.  It’s been taking comments ever since.

Aaron Kunz / EarthFix

If you use solar panels or wind turbines to generate your own power, you can sell the electricity you don’t use back to your utility. But one Northwest power company wants to stop sending checks to customers who are big energy producers.

Idaho Power awards a credit against customers’ utility bills for the solar and wind power they put onto the grid. If they still have unused credits when the year ends, Idaho Power sends them a check.

But that could change. Idaho Power says it needs to stop sending the checks out to avoid increased oversight by federal regulators.

Bureau of Land Management

Today marks the next step in a 1,000 mile proposed power line that would cross most of southern Idaho.  Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power want to build the Gateway West Transmission Line to add power capacity.

Rocky Mountain Power

Fourteen Idaho Power employees are on their way to the Northeast to help with Hurricane Sandy relief. The crews will work with Long Island Power Authority to turn the electricity back on in its coverage areas.

The Idaho Power crews are sending ten trucks that can be used to drill holes for new poles, and repair overhead lines.  According to Idaho Power spokesman Kevin Winslow, the workers should arrive in Long Island Wednesday night.

Idaho Governor Not Happy With Latest Gateway West Plan

Oct 25, 2012
Christopher Sebela / Flickr

State officials are hopeful that the Bureau of Land Management will reconsider a proposal to build a high-power transmission line through the Birds of Prey Conservation Area. 

They want the line on public, rather than private, land.  Known as the Gateway West project, the joint proposal by Rocky Mountain Power and Idaho Power is worth $7 billion.

Idaho Power Spends $6 Million On Repairs

Oct 9, 2012
Christopher Sebela / Flickr

Wildfires and wind storms kept Idaho Power’s repair crews busy this summer. More than 800 structures were in the path of fires, but only 45 poles were actually destroyed.

Spokesperson Lynette Berriochoa says that maintenance crews clear vegetation around the poles before fire season begins.

“So as a result, when those fires move through, some of the fires move right around those wood poles and they were spared," says Berriochoa.

But Idaho Power still has a big bill to pick up after this summer’s damage.

City of Twin Falls

Updated 3:00 PM Tuesday:  The city of Twin Falls is allowing commercial users, including restaurants, to turn their water on again.  But if water levels go too low, restrictions could go back into effect. 

The city is also working with five major industrial waters users to set an individual timeline for their operations to start again. These are mainly food processing and dairy companies. 

According to city spokesman Josh Palmer it might take until Thursday for the water system to return to normal.

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The average Idaho Power customer will pay at least $5.50 more a month starting this summer.   The state public utilities commission will likely go along with the company’s requests.