ELLINWOOD — The City of Ellinwood meets it electrical usage needs through the Kansas Power Pool and its own electrical generation.
The Kansas Power Pool was created in 2005 to provide a reliable, competitively priced electric service. Twenty-three member cities, including Ellinwood have made a 20 year commitment to the pool. The KPP was the first power pool in Kansas.
Ellinwood City Administrator Robert Peter is currently a member of the nine-member board of directors. “It’s been a good thing for us,” said Peter. “Somebody else is helping us to make decisions.” Ellinwood owns its own electrical power plant and generates when requested by the KPP.
Three administrators employed by the pool presented a program on electricity to the Ellinwood City Council and other KPP members from Sterling and Holyrood last week. In addition, non-members from Larned and St. John attended.
Attendees received an education about electrical usage. Most people arise at 6 a.m. Usage begins to rise at that time, with a peak from 5-8 p.m. when people arrive home, cook dinner and use additional air conditioning because of the heat of the day. The power pool has to have enough energy to manage the peaks that occur in late afternoon and evening.
Mark Chesney, CEO and general manager, said, “Electricity can’t be stored and is instantly consumed.”
One of the advantages to being in the power pool is the ability to commit all of the internal generation to the pool first. Extra generation can be sold to outside entities.
The KPP handles administrative duties which accounts for 2 percent of the budget.
The group also plans for the future, watching the generation capacity and projecting the need for further acquisitions.
KPP recently purchased part ownership in the Dogwood Plant, which has an extremely efficiently electrical generation plant to add to its mix of resources. In addition to Dogwood, KPP is supplied power by the Greensburg Wind Farm, coal and hydro, and member city generation.
Larry Holloway, operations manager, said, “We have begun planning for the future. Are there deals out there that make sense now?”
At the residential level, attendees were reminded of the Energy Efficiency Program where rebates were available for refrigerator, water heater, heat pump and air conditioner replacements.