Quick Fact – Pacific Northwest Generating Cooperative (PNGC)

OPALCO is a member of PNGC to ensure a reliable, affordable, clean power supply for a sustainable now and generations to come. Every watt of BPA power consumed in San Juan County is purchased through PNGC.  

  • OPALCO joined PNGC to get the best contracts, pricing and leverage on BPA power possible.
  • PNGC gives OPALCO the collective buying power of 16 electric cooperatives across seven western states which also means greater options for contracting with power suppliers and building new renewable generation sources as we transition away from fossil fuels.
  • PNGC is a cooperatively-owned electric generation utility that maximizes the competitive position of its member-owners by meeting their collective power supply and transmission needs. PNGC provides financial and strategic value through technical and policy leadership, exceptional operational practices, and meaningful member services.
  • Why do we need PNGC? By 2040, Washington’s Clean Energy Transformation Act (CETA) mandates all utilities must have achieved a carbon-free fuel mix. OPALCO is planning to build out as much local renewable power as our limited geography, expensive real estate and sensitive marine environment and view corridors can bear – but the majority of new renewable projects will have to be sited on the mainland.
  • What does PNGC provide? PNGC acts as OPALCO’s power supplier and has the expertise and lobby to negotiate the most advantageous terms – to keep costs lower for our members. PNGC manages our relationship with the Federal Columbia River Power System (through Bonneville Power Administration) and is working to develop regional renewable projects to meet the needs of its member utilities – including the challenge of decarbonization.
  • The community solar and energy storage projects that OPALCO is developing are an important part of the plan. As the regional and nation respond to climate change, decarbonization and capacity issues, this local resiliency will be essential to keep power on during the short-term mainland outages and rolling brown outs that are forecast. However, the Co-op will always rely on power from the mainland to meet the demand in its rural-remote archipelago.

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