Sustainability – Ensuring We’re Here To Serve Owner-Members in The Future
You hear a lot about “sustainability” these days, especially from corporate America. It is not just another fashionable corporate buzzword.
Sustainability is critically important to Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives. For a business, “sustainability” means doing what is necessary to continue operating far into the future. It means meeting changing expectations, keeping pace with technology and remaining relevant in a rapidly changing world.
Are things changing for the energy industry? You bet.
Our grandparents weren’t nearly as dependent on electricity as we are today. If their lights went out, it rarely stopped them doing what needed to be done. Today, if the power goes out, our lives are likely to come to a screeching halt. Equipment stops running, networks go down, devices can’t be recharged, and most of us are stuck until it gets fixed.
Clearly, expectations have changed, and electric co-ops are evolving to meet those changes. That’s why we recently released a sustainability plan to help guide the way.
EKPC and the owner-members spent nearly a year developing the plan. Just as standards for reliable service have changed, the plan recognizes shifting expectations among co-op members, employees, policy-makers, regulators, lenders and many other stakeholders.
For example, increasingly, co-op members want to know how their energy is generated and how it affects the environment. The Sustainability Plan sets targets for using more renewables and reducing emissions of carbon dioxide. Not only does this help meet changing expectations, but, as the cost of renewables decreases, it helps us keep our energy affordable. It is the right thing to do and it is also good business.
Fossil fuels—coal and natural gas—will remain essential to providing reliable, affordable energy for years to come. But, as EKPC diversifies its energy portfolio, that helps control costs and manage risks for all of us.
That’s just one way we are evolving to better serve member needs. If you are interested in the plan, check out an overview at https://www.ekpc.coop/ekpc-planning-future