Idaho Public Utilities Commission

Case No. AVU-E-12-01, Order No. 32438

January 30, 2012

Contact: Gene Fadness (208) 334-0339, 890-2712



Avista proposes agreement with landfill waste to energy project


Avista Corporation is asking the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to approve a purchase power agreement with Kootenai Electric Cooperative’s landfill gas generating facility near Bellgrove, 15 miles south of Coeur d’Alene. 


 The 3.2-megawatt project is a qualifying facility under the provisions of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act. PURPA requires that electric utilities offer to buy power produced from qualifying small power producers or cogenerators.  The rate to be paid small-power producers is to be equal to the cost the utility avoids if it would have had to generate the power itself or purchase it from another source.  


Under the agreement, Avista would purchase the project’s output at the lower of either 1) 85 percent of the market rate or 2) the avoided-cost rate for PURPA projects smaller than 10 average megawatts.  If approved, the contract becomes effective immediately.  Kootenai Electric may terminate the agreement at any time by providing Avista 30 days’ written notice. 


Avista, headquartered in Spokane, serves about 122,000 customers in northern Idaho.  Kootenai Electric is a member-owned cooperative utility headquartered in Hayden and is not regulated by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission. 


The commission is taking public comment on the proposed sales agreement through Feb. 8.  Comments are accepted via e-mail by accessing the commission’s homepage at and clicking on "Comments & Questions About a Case." Fill in the case number (AVU-E-12-01) and enter your comments. Comments can also be mailed to P.O. Box 83720, Boise, ID 83720-0074 or faxed to (208) 334-3762. 

A full text of the commission’s order, along with other documents related to this case, is available on the commission’s Web site at Click on “File Room” and then on “Electric Cases” and scroll down to the above case number.