CONTACT: Eric Barendsen,, 303-704-0765

LAKEWOOD, Colo. – Western Area Power Administration has announced that its Colorado River Storage Project and Rocky Mountain region will pursue final negotiations toward full membership in the Southwest Power Pool Regional Transmission Organization. WAPA’s Upper Great Plains region will pursue final negotiations to expand its participation in the SPP RTO in the Western Interconnection.

Participating in this initiative to extend the SPP RTO into the West is consistent with WAPA’s commitment to develop alternative ways of doing business that retain and increase the value of the resource WAPA markets and the services it provides its customers in a dynamic energy industry.

“Taking under careful consideration our customers’ and our industry’s collective movement to adapt to a rapidly changing energy environment, I am pleased at the progress we have made as WAPA takes a further thoughtful step in pursuing final negotiations with SPP,” said WAPA Administrator and CEO Tracey A. LeBeau. “We look forward to continuing to diligently engage with SPP, customers, Tribes and other stakeholders on technical implementation details to ensure the best possible outcomes for all entities involved.”

​WAPA remains committed to ensuring the organization and its customers stay well-positioned to deliver on our mission to safely provide reliable, cost-based hydropower and transmission to our customers and the communities we serve.

WAPA and other utilities partnering with SPP would expand the availability of resources and coordination within the RTO and enhance access to its services, which include day-ahead wholesale electricity market administration, transmission planning, reliability coordination and resource adequacy.

“As an organization driven by collaboration with a focus on reliability and affordability, SPP respects WAPA’s careful deliberation of its customers’ needs when considering RTO membership,” said SPP President and CEO Barbara Sugg. “This step toward the expansion of our service territory in the Western Interconnection will lead to increased value for all of the SPP RTO. We’re honored to grow our partnership with WAPA and committed to helping them achieve their goals related to delivery of reliable, affordable power to their customers.”

Alongside WAPA, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Colorado Springs Utilities, Deseret Generation & Transmission Cooperative, Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska, Platte River Power Authority and Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, should they choose, would also participate in SPP’s Integrated Marketplace in the Western Interconnection. Participation in the SPP RTO in the West is expected to provide operational and reliability benefits along with enhanced transmission planning and development mechanisms.

A study commissioned by SPP and conducted by the Brattle Group found that participants’ membership in the SPP RTO would produce approximately $49 million in savings annually for current and new members. This is in addition to the expected reliability and transmission benefits.

Learn more about WAPA’s activities with the SPP RTO.


About WAPA: Western Area Power Administration annually markets and transmits more than 28,000 gigawatt-hours of clean, renewable power from 57 federal hydroelectric powerplants owned and operated by the Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and International Boundary and Water Commission in 15 western and central states. It is part of the Department of Energy. Visit the website at​.​

Last modified on November 2nd, 2023