Demand for energy from Dominion Virginia Power expected to grow by 28 percent

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PJM Interconnection projects that Dominion Virginia Power will see a 28 percent increase in customer demand for electricity over the next decade, the fastest growth rate in a 13-state region.

Based in Valley Forge, Pa., PJM operates the electric supply grid for Virginia, and 12 other states in an area stretching from Chicago to the District of Columbia and the mid-Atlantic. The growth rate for the area as a whole is expected to be more than 18 percent. 

PJM’s outlook comes from an annual load forecast for the period of 2010 to 2020. This year’s forecast is based on load models estimated from historical data from January 1998 through August 2009.

On an annual basis, the study predicts a 2.5 percent increase in summer demand for Dominion, slightly higher than the 2.2 percent rate in last year’s study. Overall, PJM predicts the company’s summer peak demand for electricity will increase over the next decade by about 5,600 megawatts. That’s equivalent to the energy needs of 1.4 million new homes.  Dominion serves 2.4 million retail electric customers in Virginia and northeastern North Carolina.

Over the next three years, it plans $4 billion in capital investments, including two new power stations that will supply 1,175 new megawatts of power by 2012.  “Our job is clear,” Paul Koonce, Dominion Virginia Power’s CEO said in a statement. “We need to develop new sources of generation, and we need to provide our customers products, services and programs that deliver energy to them more efficiently…”

A hearing begins today before the State Corporation Commission on a $246 million rate increase sought by Dominion to help pay for some of the capital improvement investments.


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