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Nevada regulators okay major transmission expansion to move 5GW of renewable energy

March 24, 2021

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

The Public Utilities Commission of Nevada has approved the first phase of NV Energy Inc.’s proposed plan to build nearly 600 miles of transmission lines intended to support the expansion of renewable energy resources both in the state and regionally.

NV Energy, through its Nevada Power Co. and Sierra Pacific Power Co. subsidiaries, on March 22 secured regulatory approval (20-07023) to begin preliminary design and permitting for both segments of the $2.5 billion “Greenlink Nevada” project. Procedurally, NV Energy is amending its 2018 joint integrated resource plan.

The company in a news release said the project is expected to spur the development of about 5 GW of renewables throughout Nevada. It would increase power import capability to NV Energy’s northern Nevada service territory, particularly around Reno, Nev., improve overall reliability and improve interconnections with other states, where they could access wind and hydro resources.

After preliminary design and permitting, NV Energy may start construction on Greenlink West, a 351-mile, 525-kV line between the Northwest substation in Las Vegas and the Fort Churchill substation in Yerington, Nev., southeast of Reno. The project also includes two 345-kV lines between the Fort Churchill substation and two substations in Reno. Greenlink West is slated for completion in December 2026.

When it announced the Greenlink project in July 2020, NV Energy, a Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiary, also identified three new solar-plus-storage projects it intended to add to its resource mix. The projects were approved by the PUC in a separate proceeding in November 2020.

Nevada targets a renewable portfolio standard of 50% by 2030 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

[Selene Balasta]

More ($): Nev. regulators approve 1st phase of NV Energy transmission link proposal

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