Month: May 2016

Natural Gas At Owen Electric’s Front Door

If there’s natural gas right outside your front door, why not use it to generate electricity? That’s exactly what one Kentucky electric cooperative is planning to do.

“Given the availability of a natural gas pipeline directly in front of our headquarters and the affordability of the fuel, it just makes sense to take advantage of the opportunity,” said Mark Stallons, president and CEO of Owen Electric Cooperative in Owenton.

On May 17, workers moved a 1,988-kilowatt generator into place. When it starts operating in June, it’s expected to provide supplemental power for the co-op’s nearly 60,000 members.

The project cost $2.6 million, but savings are expected to exceed $9 million over 20 years. It will also provide a revenue stream for the city of Owenton’s general fund.

“The city of Owenton receives 3 percent of the gross gas billing,” said Frank Downing, chairman of the Owen County Industrial Authority. “Any connection to the system from the gas line’s origin in Gallatin County improves the economic condition for the city of Owenton through its charge for gas sales.”

Under Owen Electric’s contract with East Kentucky Power Cooperative, its power supplier, the co-op is allowed to supplement a portion of its load with power from sources other than those provided by the Winchester-based G&T.

“There is an interest among our 16 distribution co-op members in seeking alternative forms of generation,” said Nick Comer, East Kentucky Power’s external affairs manager. “A clause in our standard agreement gives them the flexibility to utilize local resources, including renewable or fossil fuel generation.”

Derrill Holly | ECT Staff Writer

Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives Provide Disaster Relief Vehicle/Trailer

Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives are partnering with the American Red Cross to improve emergency response services in Kentucky. The cooperatives have joined together to acquire a new disaster relief vehicle, trailer and resources that can be deployed to provide aid.

“Thanks to the support and partnership of Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, the Red Cross can continue to respond to disasters with the generous contribution of a vehicle and trailer, which can hold essential supplies. Their support ensures we continue to help families and individuals with the immediate emergency needs one may have and help them on their road to recovery,” said Jennifer Adrio, Red Cross Kentucky Region CEO.

The new trailer and emergency vehicle are branded with the Touchstone Energy logo to commemorate the partnership with the Red Cross. The partnership has also helped to stock the trailer with emergency supplies.

The new equipment provided by Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives improves the Red Cross’s ability to render aid to those needing emergency assistance, including the state’s 1.5 million people (about 35 percent of the state’s population) served by electric cooperatives.

Kentucky’s electric cooperatives always take every precaution to prepare their systems for natural disasters and this new Red Cross vehicle will supplement what Kentucky’s co-op response teams do when help is needed the most.

The equipment is being added to the Red Cross’s fleet of emergency response vehicles. It will be housed in Lexington, but it can be called out to respond to disasters in any area of the state.

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters such as floods, tornados and winter storms. The Kentucky Region of the American Red Cross serves 119 counties through five regional chapters.

Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives encourage folks to take advantage of Red Cross emergency preparedness information before disasters strike. Find information in the Emergency Resource Library at www.redcross.org under Get Help. The Red Cross also offers several mobile apps to keep you safe during an emergency.

The co-op sponsorship will also help support the American Red Cross Blood Bus Campaign to upgrade the organization’s fleet of bloodmobiles.

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