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PacifiCorp gives lift to ScottishPower

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ScottishPower's U.S. division contributed strong year-over-year profits during the fiscal third quarter, the company said Thursday.

The boost helped ScottishPower's quarterly earnings increase 37 percent year-over-year.

The U.S. division is PacifiCorp, which operates as Utah Power in Utah and Idaho and Pacific Power in four other states. PacifiCorp has about 1.5 million customers.

The company said PacifiCorp had third-quarter revenues of about $903 million, down from $1.3 billion in the prior-year period.

"The quarter-on-quarter fall in revenues is attributable to the reduction in wholesale power prices and volumes experienced in the Western U.S.," the company said.

PacifiCorp's operating profit increased by about $140 million, to about $251 million. Its contributions to profits were due to regulatory rate increases and lower power costs during the quarter, the company said. It also noted the impact of the outage of the Hunter Power Plant in Emery County was significant in the third fiscal quarter a year ago.

The company also noted it is trying to add to its generation resources and is evaluating the results of an energy solicitation proposal that resulted in more than 50 responses from 30 prospective suppliers to meet Utah's energy needs.

Currently pending in Utah are cases that seek $104 million in replacement power costs from the Hunter outage, with hearings set for May, and a deferred accounting for $109 million in excess net power costs. The company also has filed applications in Utah, Wyoming, Oregon and Idaho for the deferral and amortisation of the costs associated with the closure of the Trail Mountain mine in Utah totaling approximately $46 million.

PacifiCorp also has entered into an agreement to get a supply of power from a 250-kilowatt/2,000-kilowatt-hour Vanadium Energy Storage System from Vanteck Technology Corp. of British Columbia.

The modular and relocatable unit will be used to supply peak power capacity and end-of-line voltage support in a remote part of southeastern Utah.

The installation and commissioning of the unit is expected to be completed by June 30.


E-mail: bwallace@desnews.com