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Saving Energy, Again

We’re at it again, trying to get you to save energy.

This month, we’ve gone so far as to shove money in your face, using the words and pictures in the Kentucky Living 2011 Energy Guide to make the point that using energy more efficiently can save you money.

Electric co-ops recognize that changing energy habits is hard. That’s why they offer different ways to make it easier, from financial incentives to practical advice. That’s why, in the pages of your electric co-op magazine this month, we’re publishing the Kentucky Living 2011 Energy Guide.

This marks the third year in a row of devoting the largest feature in the magazine to a collection of practical ways to make your energy dollars more productive. And that’s in addition to the regular monthly columns devoted to energy efficiency.

As a cooperative utility owned by its customer-members, your local electric co-op has a strong interest in seeing that you and your community make the most productive use of each energy dollar.

Using electricity efficiently also helps the co-op operate effectively as a business. Cost pressures are everywhere these days, and making the best use of electricity can be more cost-effective than building another large power plant to meet increasing electricity use.

The natural gas generation
You’ll find another hot energy topic in The Future of Electricity column—the increasing use of natural gas to generate electricity.

For decades, coal has been used to generate about half the electricity in the United States and about 98 percent of the electricity in Kentucky. During the past few years, that share has been falling toward 40 percent for the nation and 90 percent for Kentucky.

Natural gas is the fuel that’s filling in for most of that decline in coal’s share of electric generation. Those numbers show that coal is still by far the dominant source of our electricity, and will be for a long time to come. But the recent increase in natural gas generation shows we need to start paying attention to its advantages and disadvantages.

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