Tag Archives: Energy Efficiency

August 12, 2014 – August bills include Current Word

When members open their billing statement from Horry Electric this month, they’re  going to find the Summer 2014 edition of Current Word, which is published periodically by the Cooperative as a supplement to other communications outlets.

Our new mobile apps are featured  in the Summer 2014 edition of Current Word.  Members will also find information about:

  • Convenient payment options
  • Local Pay Stations
  • An opportunity to get up to a $250 rebate for installing a new electric water heater
  • PLUS, tips on how to prepare before, during and after a storm

 

 

 

 

CEO of statewide association of electric co-ops in SC reacts to proposed EPA regulations

Dialogue_MikeMugshot

Mike Couick, CEO, The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina

Earlier today, Jo Ann Emerson,  the CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association,  spoke out about the serious consequences of new EPA regulations on the price of electricity and the impact on communities, jobs and families.

Electric cooperatives across the country, including the 20 in South Carolina, are also reviewing the regulations announced today.  Mike Couick, CEO of The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina, has issued this statement:

“The EPA’s proposal today is voluminous and will take some time to digest. However, one does not have to be opposed to controlling carbon dioxide emissions to also acknowledge that it will be expensive. The EPA proposals are broad and require a number of assumptions to draw conclusions at this time.
“Based on some simplified assumptions, our calculations show cost increases for electric cooperative members: Let’s say electric cooperatives replaced all of the electricity they distribute that is generated by coal-fired power plants. Assume half the replacement power would be generated by natural gas-fired plants and half from nuclear power plants. Such a change could raise electric cooperative members’ power costs more than 50 percent.
“Electric cooperatives serve in suburbs, small towns and rural areas in all 46 counties in the state, covering 70 percent of the land mass. Compared to other utility customers in S.C., our members are 50 percent more likely to live below the poverty level. Cost increases matter.
“Electric cooperatives in South Carolina have been ahead of the curve in exploring ways to control costs and reduce emissions. We spearheaded the development of the state’s largest solar power farm, located in Colleton County. We have decades of experience in controlling energy peak demand through the targeted control of large energy-using appliances. And, we have piloted large scale energy efficiency projects as part of a program that allocates as much as 1.1 percent of the revenue of the co-ops’ wholesale electricity aggregator, Central Electric Power Cooperative, to such efforts.
“Our goal is to ensure that the president and the EPA consider the effects of their proposals on working South Carolinians and our economy while we all look for ways to protect our environment.”

 

The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina, Inc. is the state association of independent, member-owned electric cooperatives. More than 1.5 million South Carolinians in all 46 counties use power provided by electric cooperatives. Together, the co-ops operate the state’s largest electric power system with more than 70,000 miles of power lines across 70 percent of the state. More information is available at www.ecsc.org.

 

April bills to include Current Word

Horry CurrentWord 14 March rev2_Page_1When members open their billing statement from Horry Electric in April, they’re  going to find the Spring 2014 edition of Current Word.

Current Word  is a newsletter produced periodically to call attention to specific activities or information members need to know.

The 2014 Annual Meeting of Members, scheduled for Tuesday, May 13,  is the primary focus of the newsletter.

Also featured in the Spring 2014 edition of Current Word;

  • Look up before you plant – Ensuring members have reliable and efficient electric service is a driving force at Horry Electric. One way we do this is by maintaining a clear path, or right-of-way easement, around power lines.
  • Stand with Horry Electric for lower power costs – Members are encouraged to visit http://sc.tellepa.com to send a direct message to the EPA. Tell them their plan won’t work for your family, your community or our nation’s economy.
  • Horry Electric is returning $1.6 million in capital credits to members in April! As a not-for-profit utility, Horry Electric returns revenues that exceed operating costs to members through capital credits. Due to the expense of processing and issuing checks, capital credit refunds below $10 will be credited to the individual’s electric account. Capital credit checks are expected to be delivered to members by the end of April.  For more details, see page 20 D of the April 2014 edition of South Carolina Living magazine. To learn more about Capital Credits, visit horryelectric.com.

 

 

 

 

enLiGHTenSC workshop rescheduled for April 5

horry 7 625x4 875 (2) The FREE teacher workshop originally scheduled for February 22 at Horry Electric had to be cancelled due to inclement weather.  It has been rescheduled for Saturday, April 5.

enLIGHTenSC, a collaborative effort between the electric cooperatives in South Carolina and the South Carolina Council on Economic Education (SC Economics), is intended to enlighten teachers on our state’s energy landscape. The lesson plans and tools on the enlightensc.org website will allow educators an opportunity to teach students about the history of electricity – how it’s generated and its effects on our environment.

“It’s so much more than just a website,” says James P. “Pat” Howle, executive vice president and CEO of Horry Electric Cooperative.  “The collaborative effort includes teacher workshops throughout South Carolina in 2014 and one of them is planned for K-8 teachers in Horry County in April.”

“We’re inviting teachers to attend a free, informative one-day session at our headquarter offices on Cultra Road,” says Howle. “The session will feature enLiGHTenSC, a K-12 energy and economic education program developed for South Carolina schools and written to state standards.”  Over the course of the six-hour workshop, explains Howle,  attendees will be introduced to grade-specific energy lesson plans, explore the program’s website as an interactive resource, learn about the history, purpose and social implications of member-owned electric power in South Carolina and earn six credit renewal points.

Lunch will be provided.

Register today!  Space is limited to 20 attendees on a first-come, first-served basis.

To secure your registration, complete the online form below and press the submit button. Then, print the form and mail it with a $25 check for deposit made payable to SC Economics. The registration fee will be returned at the end of the session to attendees. However, non-attendance will result in forfeiture of this fee.

February CEO column focuses on ‘Cutting back’ on potential outages

James P. "Pat" Howle, Executive Vice President and CEO

James P. “Pat” Howle, Executive Vice President and CEO

Before a storm ever hits, Horry Electric Cooperative has already taken action to prevent outages. We take a proactive approach through a year-round process of maintaining our rights of way.

We are constantly cleaning, clearing, and trimming brush and debris away from our power lines. Why? When wind, rain, ice or snow push or weigh down trees, their limbs—sometimes the entire tree—can fall onto power lines, causing outages.

Right-of-way (ROW) maintenance helps ensure safe, reliable electric service. You have probably seen our maintenance contract crews’ vehicles with telescoping boom and saw-type cutter heads trimming trees, mowing or using chain saws to clear corridors beneath our power lines. Did you know that vegetation, trees, shrubs and brush growing too close to power lines and distribution equipment leads to approximately 15 percent of power interruptions?

Since we can’t cut our entire ROW every year, trees may grow 6 to 10 feet by the time the crews return. It’s a job that’s never done—when the crews finish trimming activities along our almost 3,000 miles of overhead distribution lines, vegetation is growing back at the starting point.

Another key reason for keeping the ROW clear is safety. Accidents happen so quickly. Kids climbing trees can be a tragedy if they touch a limb in contact with an energized line or touch the line itself. The result can be severe injury or even death. Adults also are at risk if working around lines in trees. Power lines on the Horry Electric system can carry up to 25,000 volts—even a touch can be deadly.

Trees beautify our property, help cool our homes, provide privacy screens, and even sometimes increase our property value if placed properly. Unfortunately, trees and power lines are not a good mix. Trees growing into lines can cause blinks and power outages. (Even those vines that grow so fast in spring and summer can cause “line loss,” or power lost in transmission, if the vines give the power a path to the ground.)

Before planting trees in your yard, think about how tall they may grow and how wide their branches may spread. As a rule of thumb, 25 feet of ground-to-sky clearance should be  available on each side of our utility poles to give power lines plenty of space. Choose tree varieties with care and plant with power lines in mind.

Thanks for your cooperation—that’s what makes Horry Electric Cooperative work!

enLiGHTenSC workshop available for teachers in Horry County

enlighten sc logo enLIGHTenSC, a collaborative effort between the electric cooperatives in South Carolina and the South Carolina Council on Economic Education (SC Economics), is intended to enlighten teachers on our state’s energy landscape. The lesson plans and tools on the enlightensc.org website will allow educators an opportunity to teach students about the history of electricity – how it’s generated and its effects on our environment.

“It’s so much more than just a website,” says James P. “Pat” Howle, executive vice president and CEO of Horry Electric Cooperative.  “The collaborative effort includes teacher workshops throughout South Carolina in 2014 and one of them is planned for K-8 teachers in Horry County this month.”

“We’re inviting teachers to attend a free, informative one-day session at our headquarter offices on Cultra Road,” says Howle. “The session will feature enLiGHTenSC, a K-12 energy and economic education program developed for South Carolina schools and written to state standards.”  Over the course of the six-hour workshop, explains Howle,  attendees will be introduced to grade-specific energy lesson plans, explore the program’s website as an interactive resource, learn about the history, purpose and social implications of member-owned electric power in South Carolina and earn six credit renewal points.

Lunch will be provided.

Register today!  Space is limited to 20 attendees on a first-come, first-served basis.

To secure your registration, complete the online form below and press the submit button. Then, print the form and mail it with a $25 check for deposit made payable to SC Economics. The registration fee will be returned at the end of the session to attendees. However, non-attendance will result in forfeiture of this fee.

WARNING! These cold temperatures will have an impact on your electric bill!

myenergyonlinehomepagegraphic“We hope members have resisted the temptation to push thermostats above the recommended setting of 68 degrees during this cold snap,” says Ricky Lowder, senior marketing representative for Horry Electric Cooperative. “With the temperatures we’ve seen the last few days, it has been a real struggle for heating systems to meet that 68 degree setting,” he continues. ” Pushing the setting up might make you feel warm and toasty at the moment, but you’ll regret it when you get the bill.”

A system running longer means more electricity is used.

Here’s how it works.  The amount of energy used, called consumption, by furnaces, heat pumps or baseboard heaters is directly related to how long they run. Because they are connected to a thermostat, they run when the temperature drops a few degrees below the thermostat set point in your home. When the outside temperature is colder than normal, more heat is lost through the ceiling, walls, floors, and openings such as windows and doors. The thermostat senses this extra heat loss and operates the furnace more often to keep up with the heat loss. The longer the unit operates, the higher the energy consumption, which results in a higher electric bill.

“A spike of higher energy consumption  due to colder weather can have a significant impact on your total bill, especially if extreme temperatures continue for several days” says Lowder.

So members won’t be totally surprised when the bill comes after this cold snap, Horry Electric has been and is continuing to proactively encourage everyone to get access to their account to view their personal energy use through MyEnergy Online. “Just go to our home page and click on the MyEnergy Online graphic, ” says Lowder. “Once you get started, you’ll be on your way to taking control of your energy use.”

“It’s a powerful tool,” says Lowder. “The immediate feedback of seeing how much energy you use each day gives you a chance to alter your behavior and make changes before daily energy use adds up to a big electric bill.”

Visit horryelectric.com and dig through the comprehensive guide to energy savings to see what you might be able to do to map out a plan of action to get more out of the energy dollars you spend.  “There isn’t much we can do about the weather,” says Lowder, “But we can each take control of how we use energy in our homes and businesses.”