A planned 2,000-mile network of electric lines known as the Energy Gateway is more than a project to transport massive amounts of wind and solar energy among Western states that face potential supply shortfalls.
Linking the islands
The importance of linking Western utilities to each other is clear to Pacific Power. If utilities aren’t closely connected, “then we might as well be islands, and then you see what happens,” Bird said.
A clean energy gap
If strong federal policies to accelerate carbon-free energy development are bottled up, expansion of renewable power will be even more dependent on utilities to achieve clean energy goals — through company and state mandates.