By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News
Want more top stories? Sign up here for daily or weekly newsletters with our top news.
The city would pay the money to Nippon Paper Industries USA if the company, a city customer, reduces its power load during high-usage times during the pilot project.
The idea of the pilot project is to see whether paying a large user to cut its usage would be feasible for BPA’s regional customers, said Phil Lusk, city deputy director of power and telecommunications systems.
Council members approved the agreement between BPA and the city 6-0 at their Tuesday meeting.
“Under no circumstances will any of [the city’s] other ratepayers be responsible for the financial resources in this transaction,” Lusk said.
No agreement has been made with Nippon at this point, he said.
Lusk said city staff will discuss the details of a potential agreement with Nippon in the next two weeks.
No comment was immediately available from Nippon mill manager Harold Norlund.
If Nippon officials ultimately agree, Lusk said, the test would involve paper plant staff reducing the plant’s electricity use at the request of BPA at certain times over a period of about seven months.
BPA officials hope to use this practice, called demand response, to reduce use across its power grid.
Lusk said the seven-month test period would help answer the question: “How [would BPA] develop a commercial rate schedule that will encourage customers to participate [in demand response]?”
He said Nippon was chosen as the only one of the city’s customer to participate.
That’s because the plant on Marine Drive regularly uses the amount of electricity BPA requires for the test.
It also has the ability to reduce power use with only 10 or 15 minutes’ notice, Lusk said.
Also at the Tuesday council meeting, council members voted 6-0 to declare as surplus a stretch of city-owned property about 50 feet by 747 feet off the 1800 block of South Cherry Street.
Council members authorized City Manager Dan McKeen to sign documents for the sale of the Cherry Street property in exchange for three parcels of land along Peabody Creek between Third and Fifth streets totaling about 2 acres.
Nathan West, the city’s community and economic development director, said city staff have been negotiating the land exchange with the estate of Lloyd Allen.
That family has used the Cherry Street property as a driveway to access the adjacent Allen estate-owned property since at least 1964.
The city acquired the Cherry Street land from the state Department of Natural Resources in July 2003 after the state Legislature decreed various DNR-owned properties should be conveyed to municipalities for recreational uses, West said.
The Cherry Street property’s long-standing use as a driveway prevented these uses, West said, so the city worked with the Allen estate to determine other properties in the city that could be exchanged for the land and be used for recreational purposes.
In exchange, West said, the Allen estate will negotiate the purchase of the three parcels adjacent to Peabody Creek.
West said the city owning these parcels will allow for the future protection of Peabody Creek and for the possible establishment of a trail between downtown Port Angeles and the Olympic National Park Visitor Center at 3002 Mount Angeles Road.
Reporter Jeremy Schwartz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5074, or at email@example.com.