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Mar 22 , 2011

Post by Dan Kolbet

owl video
Avista recently gave a helping hand to a Great Horned owl chick on the Palouse. It’s small efforts like this that tell the real story about who Avista is as a company and how much our employees care about the communities we live in.

The owl is now back in its nest at Pullman’s Lincoln Middle School. The chick, which was too young to fly, was found a week ago at the foot of the nest tree on the school grounds. Employees from Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine took the bird back to WSU, for an examination and feeding while plans were made to replace it in its nest.

After waiting for winds to die down, Avista donated a large bucket truck, along with serviceman Tom Haeder, to reach the nest, about 40 feet off the ground. The mother owl flew off when Avista arrived, but was seen circling nearby before returning to the nest.

We’re glad we could be there to help out.

Published: 3/22/2011  9:26 AM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Mar 14 , 2011
Original Song video
Grand Prize Video winner, "Original Song" by Vivek Jayarm, Rachit Singh, Maritz Lang from Pullman High School.
Post by Brandi Smith

They're On Video
Grand Prize Runner Up video winner, "They're On"
by Hunter Farnsworth and Kyle Libey of Pullman
High School.
Looking for a little creative refreshment to start your day? Well look no further. High school students from our service territory recently took the “Every Little Bit” video challenge to create a short film demonstrating the importance of energy efficiency. With over 70 entries, the competition was fierce.

The Grand Prize winners were three imaginative students from Pullman High School. Not only will their school get a $2,500 technology grant from Avista, but they will each receive a day of learning at NxNW Production Company in Spokane as part of their prize package. Talk about awesome.

Check out the top five videos by clicking on the links below. You will no doubt be inspired by their creativity and attention to detail. Watch out “Glee,” it looks like our local talent might give you a run for your money. 

• “Original Song” Grand Prize video by Vivek Jayarm, Rachit Singh, Maritz Lang from Pullman High School.
• “They’re On” Grand Prize Runner Up video winner by Hunter Farnsworth and Kyle Libey of Pullman High School.

• “Eco-Friendly Rap” Viewers Choice Award by Aliva Imholt, Jesse German, and Ethan Sanchez of St. Maries High School.

• “Simple Ideas” Honorable Mention by Savannah Miller and Ana Ruddlesden of Mead High School.

• “Eye Save Energy” Honorable Mention by Chelsea Thaut and Jessica Hudson of St. Maries High School
Published: 3/14/2011  2:12 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Mar 04 , 2011
The photos above are courtesy of Nicole Hensley and Blush Response Photography.
Post by Dan Kolbet

Earlier this winter when it was really, really cold outside, I took a tour of Avista’s Post Street Sub with local freelance photographer Nicole Hensley. Nicole was seeking an inside look at this historic building. Most people refer to it as the Washington Water Power building, because of the big green letters on the roof. We were taken on an insider’s tour by Avista Chief Operator Dave Brown.

Nicole got some great photos of the historic elements of the building and I encourage you to thumb through them above and visit her website. I grabbed some video as well, you can see that below. Post Street is still a working piece of Avista’s electrical grid, but most everything you’ll see in the images and video are no longer in service, but preserved for history’s sake.

Details on the Post Street Sub
Energy generated at Avista's Monroe Street and Upper Falls power plants is transmitted via large underground cables to the Post Street Substation, where it is distributed throughout the company's electrical system. Serving as the control center for Monroe Street and Upper Falls, this building houses personnel who oversee both plants.

Constructed in 1909, the Post Street Substation has also served as a warehouse and sheltered streetcars. Powered by electricity from Avista's hydroelectric facilities, streetcars were a popular form of Spokane-area transportation from the late 1800s until they were removed from service in 1936.

Designed by the famed architect Kirtland Cutter, this Romanesque brick structure with large, recessed arch windows is an excellent example of Spokane's early industrial architecture.

The four ornate iron domes, or cupolas, which once graced the corners of the substation roof, were donated to the U.S. government during the World War II scrap metal shortage. Post Street stands today as a prominent part of Avista's "living history."
Published: 3/4/2011  3:25 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Mar 02 , 2011
charge video
Post by Dan Kolbet

Today the Spokesman-Review published an article about Avista’s plan to upgrade our three electric vehicle charging stations in Spokane. Check out “Plugged into the future.” We’ve got one at Avista’s HQ on Mission, one at Spokane City Hall and the last one is at the Steam Plant downtown.

The plan is to upgrade the stations from 120 volts to 240 volts, speeding charge time and convenience. As more electric vehicles find their way to our streets, stations like these are likely to become more common.

The video above is from last April when the stations were first installed. Thought you might like another look.
Published: 3/2/2011  8:59 AM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Feb 25 , 2011
Snow vid
Don’t forget to clear a path to your meters too
Post by Dan Kolbet

I got a lot of grief last November when I posted a video about clearing a path to your meter using my snow blower. Why did I use it when I only had a tiny little strip to clear? What a wimp, right? To selfishly vindicate myself I created the video shown above yesterday morning before work. Here’s the work that I didn’t show.

Can you snowblow your driveway in less than a minute?

Got a video or pics of your meters (cleared of snow)? E-mail them my way.

And don’t forget to clear a path to your meters (even if it is February and it really shouldn't be snowing anyway.)
Published: 2/25/2011  10:19 AM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Feb 07 , 2011
Drafts video

You paid to heat it, you might as well keep it. Stopping drafts around the windows and doors of your home can greatly improve your comfort and hopefully reduce your energy use. Watch the video for some simple tips.
Published: 2/7/2011  2:37 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Jan 11 , 2011
Every Little Bit Video Contest
Viewer’s Choice judging is underway in Avista’s Every Little Bit video contest. High school students from throughout Avista’s service territory created more than 60 videos about energy efficiency.
The deadline for voting to tomorrow at midnight!

Videos can be given one to five stars from viewers and this voting will be used to decide a Viewer’s Choice winning video – and Apple iPod prizes to the winning team.

If you have a few minutes in your day, go to and take a look at these creative videos. And be sure to rate the videos you watch. Is there a five-star video out there?

The video contest encourages local students to think about energy and efficiency in creative ways and showcase them on video.

Published: 1/11/2011  2:32 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Dec 22 , 2010
Powering our Future video
Post by Dan Kolbet

Before the year ends, I wanted to share a few more details on our Powering Our Future: Energy Opportunities, Choices and Costs, held this fall. A highlights video of the event is embedded above, but if you can also view presentations and pictures from the event too.

Creating a sustainable energy future will take all of us working together, bringing new ideas to the table and sharing in a new era of securing, delivering and using energy.  Over 250 people gathered in Spokane Valley for the event.

National energy leaders and Avista energy experts engaged everyone in a dialogue about energy. We have posted the presentations from the event. You can also view pictures taken at the event and watch a video recap (above).

Questions about the event or any of the topics? E-mail us.
Published: 12/22/2010  9:32 AM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Nov 29 , 2010
Meter video
Post by Dan Kolbet

Over the last few weeks as snow dumped on the Inland Northwest, I’ve been urging customers to clear a path to their meters. Time to walk the talk. On Saturday morning I tweeted the above video of yours truly clearing a path to my utility meters. We recieved about 6 inches of new snow at my house that morning, on top of the 4-6 inches we had from earlier in the week.

I have the nifty advantage of a snow-blower to get the job done, but the path doesn’t have to be perfect. Just enough room to get someone in front of it without having to move mountains. And speaking of mountains – for heaven’s sake, don’t pile your snow on top of it! This might happen on accident too, so be aware. When today’s snow turns into tomorrow’s icy slush, it just might slide off your roof and onto you meters. So keep a look out.

So if you want to see me doing some manual labor, click on the video above.
Published: 11/29/2010  11:00 AM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

Nov 23 , 2010
Post and video by Dan Kolbet
We created this Infrastructure video, shown below, last March when we filed for rate adjustments in our General Rate cases in Washington and Idaho. Now that both cases have come to their respective conclusions, this video serves as a good reminder of what you're paying for with the adjusted rates.  
See more: Washington rate adjustments, Idaho rate adjustments
Infrastructure video
Published: 11/23/2010  1:14 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post

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