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Intertie (1969)
​“Intertie” showcases the construction of the Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Direct Current Intertie, a high-voltage electric superhighway between the Northwest and Southwest that helps balance power needs in the West and allows the two regions to share surplus electricity. It was the largest single transmission program ever undertaken in the United States. Construction began in the 1960s through a cooperative effort between public and private utilities in the Pacific Northwest and California. The 3,100-megawatt combined AC and DC transmission system was completed in 1970.
Intertie map.jpg

Made by documentary filmmaker Robert Charlton, the 1969 film includes aerial photography and ambient sound, as well as a terrific bluegrass score by Northwest musicians Ron Brentano and Mike Russo. It also includes a fascinating time-lapse sequence of the building of the Celilo Converter Station, the northern terminus of the intertie in The Dalles, Ore.

BPA entered “Intertie” into film festivals all over the world. It won eight awards, including the coveted Diploma of Excellence at the Venice International Film Festival and the Golden Eagle at the Council on International Non-Theatrical Events. The digital transfer was made from a 1990s video master, which retains the true colors of the original.

In 2016, BPA upgraded the BPA-owned portion of the transmission line, which runs 265 miles from The Dalles, Ore., to the Nevada/Oregon border.