BWP Holds First Meeting to Plan Burbank’s Energy Future

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On Thursday, April 20, Burbank Water and Power held its first Integrated Resources Plan (IRP) public meeting, engaging with Burbank community members to discuss the City’s future energy sources.

Burbank Water and Power is preparing for the future of energy by embarking on the development of a 20-year long-term plan, called – the Integrated Resources Plan (IRP). The IRP outlines a path to meet the energy needs of Burbank residents and businesses with carbon-neutral resources before the mandated deadline of 2045. BWP’s 2024 IRP is our boldest plan yet, as we aim to achieve sourcing 100% of our energy from carbon-neutral sources 5 years in advance of the deadline in the year 2040.

Carbon-neutral resources including renewable resources such as wind, solar, geothermal, landfill gas, biomethane, and small hydroelectric, as well as resources such as nuclear and large hydroelectric power (like the Hoover Dam), will help us to reach our ambitious goals.

The IRP is mandated by California Senate Bill 350, which requires utilities with more than 700 gigawatt-hours in retail sales in a calendar year to develop an IRP. For publicly owned utilities (POUs), like BWP, the IRP is due every five years. BWP developed its first state-mandated IRP in 2019; the next one is due in January 2024.

As we develop the IRP, each step of the plan is subject to regulatory requirements, guidelines, and milestones, such as compliance with the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), which requires that by 2030, 60% of our resources shall be renewable, using the California legislature’s definition. We must show progress towards reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by developing plans for an electric vehicle ecosystem, a rate-making process to service the transition to electric transportation, and addressing power transmission constraints, among many other requirements.

Even though community outreach is not mandated for the IRP; at BWP, your not-for-profit community-owned utility, we want to hear from our community on how to shape this long-term energy future. “BWP’s IRP engagement plan is unique, as it includes Stakeholder Technical Advisory Group (STAG) meetings, community outreach, updates to the BWP board, media advertisements, and an opinion survey,” said Mandip Samra, Assistant General Manager, BWP Power Supply. “We are planning several public meetings through the rest of 2023 and ask the community to complete a short survey,” she added.

Please check the BWP website for further information – https://www.burbankwaterandpower.com/2024-irp.

To date, Ms. Samra has led four (4) Stakeholder Technical Advisory Group meetings comprising a diverse group of BWP customers to provide input on the IRP 2024 plan. The role of the STAG is to advise on the IRP and provide input on balancing affordability, sustainability, and reliability.

As the lead for the IRP process, Ms. Samra’s key responsibility is compliance with regulatory mandates while balancing the needs of BWP customers within the constraints mentioned above. “I have first-hand experience leading IRP stakeholder engagement, most recently at Southern California Edison and Pasadena Water and Power. I look forward to hearing from the community as we forge a path to a carbon-neutral resource portfolio,” echoed Ms. Samra.

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