KIUC’s unbelievable load forecast (Part II): on false choices

flawed forecast

KIUC is sitting on a consultant's forecast that says our morning peak load will need new generating capacity by 2013.

Accordingly, KIUC is now on a fast track to purchase a $75 million 35MW fossil fuel generator, called GenX, to be sited in Kapaia.

...Which is why KIUC lobbied against the legislative moratorium on new fossil fuel plants.

Yet, why did KIUC unquestioningly accept the consultants forecast? And how did fossil fuels emerge as the top candidate?

One might expect KIUC to pull out all stops to avoid any additional fossil fuel reliance, and several alternative strategies come readily to mind.

FWIW, I'm headed down to offer testimony at today's KIUC Board meeting, and have prep'd a presentation on the flaws in the consultant forecast.

As I will testify:

"We wouldn't want to face false choices with flawed forecasts."

I'll post more here later, and this will get ya started thinking.

BTW, the yellow line in the chart above is the consultant's forecast for our "peak load", and the white line is where I think we're actually headed....down!

Film @ 11...

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Added (following my KIUC testimony):

So, one director commented that they had looked at possible changes in the forecast, and another said GenX would also run on biofuel, and for a moment I tho't there was a point they were trying to make (heh).

Now, on to Part III about sustainability thinking...

Published by Ken on May 26th, 2009 tagged Best Practices, Energy


One Response to “KIUC’s unbelievable load forecast (Part II): on false choices”

  1. Kauaibrad Says:

    Ken,

    Great work you did with these past two posts and the supporting graphs and charts you created on this.

    I was thinking the same thing, that the forecasted demand for electricity that KIUC is relying upon is too high in trying to justify a new fossil fuel powerplant in the immediate short term.

    In looking at the graphics on their demand forecast, even a revised growth forecast would give them at least 7 years before they run up against problems with their morning peak demand. What this says to me is that KIUC does not need to decided this year or even next year on for them this huge $75 million investment and committment. Having those one or two extra years of demand and fuel cost data will allowing them to see what the real trends may be.

    Making this GenX investment/committment now could be a big mistake, esp. when the decision does not need to be made in the next year or two. Events could turn out such that they don't need to make the $75 million GenX fossil fuel committment at all, and the next couple of years would make that clear or not.

    Brad