NorthWestern Energy Looking For New Energy Generation Source, ‘Maybe Solar and Wind Aren’t the Best Options’
NorthWestern Energy is requesting proposals for a new energy production facility in Montana.
“Right now our need for electricity comes at a time when it’s hot, the hottest days of summer and the coldest days of winter, kind of those times of peak demand,” NorthWestern Energy spokesman Butch Larcombe said. "That’s what we are looking for, is some generation capacity to help us meet that peak demand. We are just very early on in what will be a public process to seek ideas and proposals.”
Protestors were in front of the Northwestern Energy building in Butte on Monday, urging the company not to invest in fossile fuel energy sources. However, Larcombe says Wind and Solar projects likely won’t meet the needs of NorthWestern Energy’s customers.
“The last people to submit ideas to us and we’ll take a look at them and see what makes the most economic sense,” said Larcome. “But realistically we are interested in generation that is going to meet that demand in the hottest days. Our experience is that maybe solar and winds are not the best options, something that maybe has more flip of the switch generating capacity that we could ramp up real quick or ramp down real quickly. Either way, that is something we’re most interested in.”
Larcombe says that right now, NorthWestern Energy is forced to buy extra energy on the market during peak use periods and that a new energy source will help lower costs for NorthWestern Energy Customers in the long term.