(1) An application must contain an evaluation of the nature and economics of relevant alternatives to the proposed facility, which could in whole or in part address the problem or opportunity as described in ARM 17.20.920 that the proposed facility is designed to address, including transmission alternatives, alternative energy resources, alternative transmission technologies, alternative levels of reliability and nonconstruction alternatives. The no action alternative must be evaluated. The evaluation must also include a comparison of alternatives leading to the selection of a preferred alternative and an explanation of the reasons for the selection of the proposed facility.

(2) An application for an electric transmission line must include an evaluation of transmission alternatives, including alternative end points and intermediate substation locations for the transmission line and upgrading or replacing an existing facility that would serve to provide the needed reinforcement that would be provided by the proposed facility. An application must also evaluate alternative timing of other electric transmission lines planned by the applicant, which in whole or in part would address the problem situation or opportunity or provide the needed reinforcement that would be provided by the proposed facility. For each transmission alternative, a minimum of three load flow studies must be provided, as required by ARM 17.20.922.

(3) Alternative energy resources and energy conservation alternatives are those that can individually or in combination offset or postpone the need for the proposed facility, or provide services comparable to the proposed facility. The evaluation must include a description of each alternative energy resource or energy conservation measure, the location and quantity available, any constraints to its availability and predictable daily and seasonal variations in the availability of the energy resource, if applicable.

(4) Alternative transmission technologies are those capable of providing comparable services or addressing the problem or opportunity the proposed facility is designed to address.

(5) An application based on reliability of service considerations must contain an evaluation of alternative levels of transmission reliability, and of the provision of backup generation to customers with articular needs for reliability.

(6) Nonconstruction alternatives include the use of curtailable and interruptible load contracts with customers and load management.

(7) The no action alternative means no facility would be constructed to meet the need or provide the services the proposed facility is designed to meet or provide.

History: 75-20-105, MCA; IMP, 75-20-211, MCA; NEW, 1984 MAR p. 1844, Eff. 12/28/84; TRANS, from DNRC, 1996 MAR p. 2863; AMD, 2005 MAR p. 252, Eff. 2/11/05.