Basin Electric seeks short- and long-term power offers

Basin Electric Power Cooperative said March 13 that it has issued a request for proposal (RFP) for additional supplies of electricity from baseload, intermediate, and peaking resources on a short-term and long-term basis.

Basin Electric is seeking short-term baseload, intermediate, and peaking capacity starting in 2013 for 15 MW of capacity and higher. Longer-term proposals for baseload, intermediate, and peaking capacity for a period of at least 10 years are also being sought. Specific capacity amounts, control areas and points of delivery are defined in the RFP.

A notice of intent to bid is due back to Basin Electric by March 30. Complete proposals, including all exhibits, must be received on or before April 27. Short-listed proposals will be identified by June 22, with short-term resource selection by Sept. 1 and long-term resource selection by Dec. 31.

Basin Electric is a consumer-owned, regional cooperative headquartered in Bismarck, N.D. It generates and transmits electricity to 134 member rural electric systems in nine states: Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. The RFP said that by the end of 2012, Basin Electric will have more than 5,000 MW of winter season generating capacity, which consists of both owned generation and power purchase agreements longer than three years.

Basin Electric is seeking proposals in both its eastern and western interconnections. There are three transmission systems within the eastern interconnection and two transmission systems within the western interconnection that have been identified as possible receipt of electrical generation. Basin Electric said it has obligations in other areas as well, but is only looking for power supply in those areas specifically addressed in this RFP.

Basin Electric has loads and resources located on both the eastern and western interconnection. Basin Electric’s obligations within the western interconnection are within the following two subregions within the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC): the Rocky Mountain Power Area (RMPA) and the Northwest Power Pool (NWPP). Basin Electric’s obligations within the eastern interconnection are within the National Electric Reliability Council (NERC) regions of the Midwest Reliability Organization (MRO) and the Southwest Power Pool (SPP). For obligations within the MRO, these obligations are both in and out of the Midwest ISO (MISO) Energy Market.

Basin Electric and its partners that own the Integrated System (IS) of Western Area Power Administration (Western) and Heartland Consumers Power District (HCPD) have been evaluating whether to join a Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) such as MISO or SPP, or continue to operate as they do right now and not have their transmission system under a RTO, the RFP said.

There are two types of proposals being requested as part of this RFP process.

One is purchased power proposals for conventional resources where Basin Electric will consider entering into a purchased power agreement (PPA) with a party selling power. Resources can be sourced from existing or planned generation units, from a group of generation resources as a system, or as a purchase contract that does not have any specific resources identified. Purchase power proposals are defined for two types of resource needs: short-term purchase(s) of one or more seasons beginning the summer of 2013; and long-term purchase(s) starting in the summer 2013 or later with a term of 10 years or more.

The company also wants conventional generation proposals that include Basin Electric taking an equity position in the project. An example of this type of project is a turn-key project where a party is interested in constructing a generating unit for Basin Electric.

Basin Electric is seeking proposals for three types of power products: dispatchable peaking resources with target capacity factors of 10% to 40%; intermediate resources that will likely be scheduled 5×16 in the eastern interconnection and 6×16 in the western interconnection, which is typically either a combined cycle plant or a baseload resource; and baseload resources that can be block loaded with a high capacity factor of 70% to 100%, which are typically coal-fired units or a system sale that involves a number of generation plants that can be loaded to a higher capacity factor.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.