Nation’s most reliable energy? Nebraska’s got it

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reliability
OPPD personnel inspect a piece at a new substation in Sarpy County in 2013. OPPD photo

OPPD and Nebraska’s public power providers play a big part in luring companies – and jobs – to the state. One of the biggest draws is the state’s reputation for providing reliable power and a recent report backs that up as.

According to data released earlier this month by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Nebraska’s 2016 average electricity customer outage duration was the nation’s lowest. Excluding major events, that duration was 27 minutes. The nation’s highest average was West Virginia at 6 hours.

When including major events, such as hurricanes, snowstorms and other natural disasters, Nebraska’s duration was still the lowest in the nation, shown in the following graphic.reliability

In 2016, the most recent data available, the country’s 145 million electric customers experienced an average of 1.3 interruptions and went without power for four hours during the year.

Electric reliability is generally measured by two metrics showing the duration and frequency of outages: System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) and System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI). OPPD consistently rates among the nation’s top quartile for SAIDI.

OPPD has several programs aimed at keeping the electric system reliable, including a tree-trimming program, the Transmission and Distribution Improvement Program (TDIP), and Ground Line Inspection and Treatment (GLIT) program. Other recent measures that have helped to maintain high reliability are the Midwest Transmission Project and the upcoming Elkhorn River Valley and Sarpy transmission projects.

OPPD is also finishing a rebuild of a stretch of transmission line that was destroyed by last June’s storm. That rebuilt line will be more resilient and provide greater capacity.

Jason Kuiper

About Jason Kuiper

Jason Kuiper joined OPPD as a communications specialist in 2015. He formerly worked as a staff writer and reporter at the Omaha World-Herald.

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