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Our Energy Future

Electricity and Its Costs Are Changing
Our Energy Future

How electricity is produced, delivered, priced and used is changing here and around the world.

Idaho Power generates and delivers electricity to over half a million customers. Our typical fuel mix – or how we make electricity – looks like this:

That mix is changing. In fact, it changes each year based on snowpack, the price of natural gas and costs for buying or selling wholesale power. The diversity allows us to keep costs down.

Understanding why the price of electricity changes and how you can help combat rising prices is important as we work to create a stable, sustainable energy future.


The increase of solar on our grid is due in part to a federal law called PURPA: the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act. PURPA requires us to buy energy from solar and other qualifying projects.

Solar as a resource works for us – it fits the fluctuations of our customer demand. But we are required to sign 20-year contracts with solar developers, guaranteeing prices over that period. That puts us all on the hook for billions of dollars in energy costs.

In the future, methods for producing, buying, delivering and pricing electricity will evolve. We will work with customers and the public utilities commissions to ensure fair-priced, reliable energy.

These changes aren’t happening only in Idaho and Oregon, or the Pacific Northwest. This is a national, even global trend.

Electricity Rates

The good news is that our customers’ rates will remain stable for the near term. Our rates remain among the lowest in the nation. However, PURPA requires us to buy energy even if we already have more than our customers need. Any additional energy costs are paid by customers through higher rates.

As of Jan. 15, 2015, Idaho Power had contracts with private developers for more than 460 megawatts of new solar generation, with more projects being proposed. Projects already under contract represent energy costs of approximately $1.6 billion in guaranteed 20-year contracts.

Idaho Power is asking the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to allow for a two-year term on future utility scale contracts. This will allow prices to be adjusted to reflect actual and evolving market conditions.

Learn More


We Want To Hear From You

Share your thoughts about our energy future: Contact Us


We Want To Hear From You

Share your thoughts:
Contact Us.


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