- Clover Substation Power Project should be completed in December 2012
By Myrna Trauntvein
The Clover Substation Project, being built near Mona, should be completed in December 2012.
Don Watts, representing Rocky Mountain Power, gave Mona City Council and update on the project.
"The project is on schedule and should be completed in December of this year," said Watts. "The transmission line from the substation to Salt Lake County is on schedule as well."
The Mona to Oquirrh project, the second segment of Gateway Central, Rocky Mountain Power, as part of PacifiCorp, is constructing the addition to the power system to meet the growing needs of new and existing customers, he said.
PacifiCorp operates as Pacific Power in Oregon, Washington and California; and as Rocky Mountain Power in Utah, Wyoming and Idaho.
"What will the substation mean for Mona City and will it actually serve Mona?" asked Jonathan Jones, council member.
"The city will have better power quality," said Watts. "At the present time, the city's primary source is the Spanish Fork Substation and the exposures are a lot longer to the primary source."
If something were to happen to that line, he said, the entire area would lose power.
With the new construction completed, the city would have a much shorter distance to the Clover Substation than to the one in Spanish Fork. That would mean better service to the Mona area.
"The city will actually have two sources," said Watts. "There will be the Clover substation, and if something happens to that, the city will still have a backup line."
Within the overall Energy Gateway expansion area, Northern Utah represents the fastest growing area in Utah and one of the major growth areas within the region. New transmission lines and substations are necessary to provide additional capacity to serve the growing electrical demand of customers and to improve reliability and operational flexibility of the electrical system.
In 2007 the company announced plans to build the 500/345-kilovolt Mona to Oquirrh transmission line in northern Utah. This project is part
of PacifiCorp's overall Energy Gateway transmission expansion project. The new line provides necessary capacity to reliably integrate the company's existing and planned generation resources.
The Mona to Oquirrh transmission line starts as a single-circuit 500-kilovolt line from the Clover substation near Mona in Juab County to the Limber substation in Tooele County.
The line continues as a double-circuit 345-kilovolt line from the Limber substation to the existing Oquirrh substation in West Jordan in Salt Lake County.
"The total length of the line is approximately 100 miles," said Watts.
The construction contract was awarded to EC Source in February 2011, and construction began in May 2011.
Planned and permitted as part of this project but for future construction is a double-circuit 345-kilovolt line connecting Limber substation with the Terminal substation in Salt Lake City.
"Are you going to build two more units?" asked Mike Stringer, council member.
"That is a good question," said Watts. "We have an RP out for a generation group and it is listed as an option."
As originally envisioned, Gateway South included a core set of facilities needed to meet the long-term energy needs of PacifiCorp customers. Optional facilities were originally included to provide additional capacity for regional benefit if supported by partnerships or other long-term commitments.
These optional facilities included a second circuit from Aeolus to Clover and an additional segment from Clover to the Crystal substation in southern Nevada.
While there has been significant interest by third parties to participate in the Gateway South project and maximize the project's transmission capacity, to date, none have been able to make a financial commitment that would allow this project to be built to meet broader regional needs.
In order to determine a final route, said Watts, more than 450 miles of possible routes were studied. This analysis considered the extensive public input received during the planning process. It also considered environmentally sensitive areas, wildlife habitat, landowner requests, local business needs, customer growth, and project needs for construction and ongoing maintenance, along with the cost impact to customers.
This led to the BLM determination of the environmentally preferred route as well as adjustments through private lands. Also, an additional 46-mile segment for later construction between the Limber substation and the Terminal substation was studied as part of the possible routes and was permitted through the EIS process.
"Individually, consumers today are using 26 percent more electricity than they did 20 years ago," said Watts. "To meet this increasing demand, new facilities are needed."