Basin Electric focusing on the future

system growthBasin Electric needs additional generation and transmission resources to serve its members’ needs. This much is known.

What’s not completely clear, is how the cooperative responsibly develops those resources when facing a future fraught with uncertainty.

Progress, however, is being made.

On June 10, the U.S. Forest Service launched a 45-day comment period for the 8-mile portion of Basin Electric’s planned 278-mile AVS-to-Neset transmission line that crosses Forest Service lands.

The announcement moved the cooperative one step closer to construction of a major transmission project to help address the need for additional electric transmission capacity in northwestern North Dakota.

Meanwhile, Basin Electric is looking at market purchases and undertaking resource development activities to help the cooperative’s members achieve long-term electrical stability and reliability. Read more about those activities in “Come what may” in the May-June 2014 issue of Basin Today.

An excerpt:

“The load is just coming so fast that it is challenging to respond fast enough,” says Becky Kern, Basin Electric manager of utility planning.

“We are fortunate that we can take advantage of economic market purchase opportunities in the near term to allow enough time to develop long-term resources to serve the load growth. These market purchase opportunities also give us time to monitor the load growth while we do the initial resource development activities to minimize the chances of overbuilding our long-term resource portfolio.”

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