Power Council Appoints New Director of Power Planning
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council this week named Ben Kujala Director of Power Planning. Kujala has been acting director since April. He replaces Tom Eckman, who retired in July.
Kujala joined the Council staff in 2013 as a Senior Analyst. He recently led the redevelopment of the Regional Portfolio Model for the Seventh Power Plan, which the Council completed in February. He also coordinated efforts to link multiple power system models into a cohesive analytical framework for the plan, which the Council revises every five years. The plan, which is implemented by the Bonneville Power Administration, forecasts future demand for electricity and assigns low-cost, low- or no-carbon generating resources and energy-efficiency improvements to meet that demand.
Kujala is an expert in power system analysis and has represented the Council with regional transmission planners and the Western Electricity Coordinating Council. He is a member of the Power and Energy Society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and has been heavily involved with the working group on loss of load expectation.
Prior to joining the Council, Kujala was an Operations Research Analyst for the Bonneville Power Administration where he worked on the long-term adequacy implications of wind generation, electricity market price forecasting, Federal Columbia River Power System operations, and evaluating the benefits of a Northwest Power Pool energy imbalance market. He received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a master’s degree in statistics from Portland State University.
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