Post Falls, Idaho has a long-standing tradition of utilizing renewable energy sources. Located on the Spokane River, the Post Falls hydroelectric project was established in 1906 to provide energy to local industries and continues to generate electricity today with the same equipment that was installed over a century ago. This year, Post Falls was inducted into the Hydro Hall of Fame. The power plant was constructed on the central channel, which was the deepest and most confined of the three, with the tallest head for energy production.
The data collected will be summarized in a public report for renewable energy developers to use when considering projects on public land. Electricity bills are designed to cover all costs associated with producing electricity, maintaining the electricity grid to prevent power outages, and any public benefit funds that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. Michele Drake is the environmental compliance coordinator for Avista Corporation, which owns the Post Falls plant. Several companies have expressed interest in developing renewable energy projects on public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Southern Idaho due to its proximity to existing and planned transmission infrastructure.
At the end of the 19th century, Frederick Post discovered this site and immediately recognized its potential for development. Depending on the intensity and number of hours of sunlight in Post Falls, ID, an average electricity customer in Post Falls, ID would need a 10.5 kilowatt (kW) solar panel system to offset 100% of their annual electricity consumption, which is 13,944 kWh per year. The Office of Land Management invited the public to open house meetings to describe the process of a landscape-scale strategic approach to respond to the growing interest in proposed renewable energy projects on public land managed by BLM in Southern Idaho. The new Post Falls hydroelectric power plant would provide power to mines located nearly 100 miles away through the world's longest high-voltage transmission line.
In the early 1990s, a group of citizens from Post Falls built Falls Park along the North Channel of the Spokane River in order to improve recreational opportunities at the Post Falls facility site. Since its completion, the Post Falls project has been an important source of electricity for operating mines, mills, factories, cities, businesses and railroads in northern Idaho and eastern Washington.