Surry-Yadkin EMC is bolstering their commitment to delivering reliable energy at an affordable cost to their members with the help of a major $7.48 million grant from the United States Department of Energy (DOE).
Surry-Yadkin EMC says the project will support a series of smart grid infrastructure upgrades. This includes system monitoring, line replacements to increase grid capacity and the deployment of an automated restoration system that enables the grid to quickly identify and minimize the impacts of an outage.
Additionally, the Dobson-based co-op says they will be able to decrease the duration, frequency and impacts of outages by 15%, and reduce their maintenance costs by $2 million over the next 30 years with improved system operations. It is expected to enhance Surry-Yadkin EMC’s Electric system by providing real-time electrical grid data to target damaged areas during outages.
“We had a great team of employees working on the grant application, and we are thrilled for the co-op and its member-owners that we were chosen as a recipient,” said Greg Puckett, executive vice president and general manager of Surry-Yadkin EMC.
Surry-Yadkin EMC serves more than 27,860 members in Western North Carolina, many of which live in rural communities.
“As a small rural electric cooperative with over 90% of our revenue falling on residential member-owners, the Department of Energy grant funding will help strengthen our reliability and service while minimizing the impact of the cost of maintenance and upgrades to our member-owners,” said Puckett.
The DOE is committing $10.5 billion nationwide to improve resilience against threats of extreme weather and climate change through their Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnership (GRIP) Program.
“Today’s announcement represents the largest-ever direct investment in critical grid infrastructure, supporting projects that will harden systems, improve energy reliability and affordability,” said U.S Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm.
The GRIP program leverages federal and private investments to ensure that communities across the nation have a reliable grid that is prepared for extreme weather. This money will also help utilities like Surry-Yadkin EMC continue to deliver affordable energy, while also creating local opportunities for economic investment and jobs.
To learn more about Surry-Yadkin EMC’s commitment to grid resilience and reliability, you can head to their website to learn more about the work they are doing.