Webinar on Demand: The Future of the Power Grid Is Here
June 28, 2022
Increased customer needs and operating risks are pushing aging electric transmission and distribution systems past their limits, often with painful results for communities. In fact, the average American home endured more than eight hours without power in 2021, more than double the outage time five years ago. Severe weather events are happening more frequently at a time when consumers and co-op member-owners want and expect even higher reliability.
That’s why many electric cooperatives are actively working to harden their grid infrastructure with a keen eye on anticipating and preparing for increased adoption of renewables, distributed energy resources, electric vehicles and other emerging technologies. Virginia-based Rappahannock Electric Cooperative is among the co-ops that is deep into their planning and grid modernization efforts. John Hewa, president and CEO of Rappahannock, recently joined a CoBank webinar to explain the efforts underway at Rappahannock and share insights on how other cooperatives can think strategically about their own power grid investments for the future.
Rappahannock Electric Cooperative, which serves 22 counties in Virginia including many rural communities, also covers four interstate corridors. Preparing for a rapid increase in the adoption of EVs is a big part of the cooperative’s modernization strategy.
What’s compelling for us is what we believe is going to happen with respect to electric vehicles and the role we feel we need to play. We want to be deeply involved, directly involved in the business. One, I think it’s the right thing to do for our membership, but also it increases the awareness of what’s occurring on the grid.— John Hewa, Rappahannock Electric Cooperative
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