WASHINGTON (April 28, 2015) – In recognition of their distinguished leadership, innovation, and progress in advancing the electric power industry, three U.S. and three international electric utilities have been named as finalists for the Edison Electric Institute’s (EEI’s) 2015 Edison Award, the electric power industry’s most prestigious honor.
A committee of energy trade publication editors has selected Public Service Company of New Mexico, Tampa Electric Company, and Tucson Electric Power Company as finalists for this year’s U.S. Edison Award, while The AES Corporation, Ergon Energy Corporation Ltd., and Saskatchewan Power Corporation were named finalists for the International Edison Award.
“This year’s Edison Award finalists demonstrate the outstanding innovations taking place in the electric power industry and the groundbreaking projects and technologies that will shape the future of the industry to the benefit of our customers,” said EEI President Tom Kuhn. “These companies truly exemplify the electric power industry’s commitment to providing safe, reliable, affordable, and increasingly clean electricity to all customers.”
The 88th annual Edison Award will be presented on June 8 during the EEI Annual Convention in New Orleans. A panel of former electric utility company chief executives will select the winning U.S. and international companies.
U.S. Edison Award Finalists:
Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) – As New Mexico’s largest electric utility for the past century, PNM prides itself on representing the best interests of New Mexicans. The company sought a robust solution to move beyond compliance with the Environmental Protection Agency’s regional haze regulations not only to improve visibility at parks and wilderness areas, but also reduce other emissions, including carbon, in a way that was affordable. The proposed approach saves New Mexicans $545 million over 20 years and minimizes the immediate cost to customers. It also positions New Mexico to meet future, more-stringent regulations.
Tampa Electric Company – The Tampa Electric Company planned the expansion of its Polk Power Station and its need for increased cooling water in an innovative manner that is friendly to consumers, the local community, and the environment. The company forged creative regional partnerships with the Southwest Florida Water Management District, Polk County, and the cities of Lakeland and Mulberry. In tandem with these partnerships, the company designed and built an innovative reclaimed water-treatment project that offers dramatic environmental benefits to Hillsborough and Tampa bays. It is the first power plant in the United States to combine reclaimed water and reverse-osmosis technology with deep-well disposal of wastewater, and it will benefit local wetlands and the surrounding communities. The project will advance the cleanup of local waterways by multiple years and will improve local ecosystems for generations to come.
Tucson Electric Power Company (TEP) – In 2014, TEP developed and executed a pair of innovative responses to address increased customer demand for distributed generation solar power systems. TEP won regulatory approval to install solar panels on residential customers’ rooftops and to provide their electric service for a flat monthly fee that will remain fixed for up to 25 years. The company also forged a first-of-its-kind partnership to develop a large solar array at Fort Huachuca that helps satisfy the U.S. Army’s energy security and green power goals.
International Edison Award Finalists:
The AES Corporation (AES - Global) – The AES Corporation successfully completed a 10-year action plan to achieve the highest levels of Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) performance. AES undertook this initiative in 2005 in order to bring its EHS systems and practices in line with its corporate value to “Put Safety First.” After completing multiple EHS improvement initiatives and overcoming a number of challenges, AES attained top EHS performance levels in 2014 as measured by benchmarks set by EEI and the Dow Jones Sustainability Index.
Ergon Energy Corporation, Ltd. (Ergon - Australia) – Ergon Energy developed and deployed a pioneering asset management system to improve safety, reliability and resiliency across its large and physically challenging service region. With a highly dispersed network spanning varying climatic conditions, Ergon was challenged in managing the network’s safe interaction with the surrounding environment, including vegetation, ground levels, buildings and storms. To meet these challenges, Ergon developed the ROAMES Virtual World Asset Management System–a commercially attractive solution around spatial intelligence and automated analytics designed to improve risk management, disaster response and safety performance, while reducing costs and enhancing its customer service and value proposition.
Saskatchewan Power Corporation (SaskPower - Canada) – SaskPower’s Boundary Dam Integrated Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Project launched in 2014 as the world’s first CCS process on a coal-fired power plant using post-combustion technology. SaskPower has taken a coal unit that was reaching the end of its useful life and rebuilt it with CCS technology so it can bring reliable base load power to approximately 100,000 homes and businesses for decades to come, while reducing its carbon dioxide emissions by one million tonnes annually. That is the equivalent to removing 250,000 cars from Saskatchewan roads each year.