For more than 60 years,
a publication centered on life in Mississippi.
May 21, 2013
Nowadays, cell phones and personal digital devices are a part of our culture. Everyone, it seems, is connected on the go—whether they’re just making phone calls, text messaging, or checking email. Such communication freedom is a luxury we pay for, generally without grumbling.
So why is it that when it comes to electricity—a necessity in our modern world—many of us grumble and complain when the electric bill comes every month? We expect electricity to be there at the flip of the switch, and when it’s not, we get angry or frustrated.
Hey, I’m no different—I expect the lights to come on every time, too. And as the CEO of the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi, I have a special responsibility to make sure your electric service is safe, reliable and affordable.
But I also believe that when compared to other commodities, electricity remains a great value.
For example, over the past 10 years, gasoline has shot up 10.9 percent on average every single year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A loaf of white bread has increased 4.2 percent annually, and a dozen eggs 6.5 percent per year.
In comparison, electricity has increased just 3.7 percent a year nationally for the past decade. When you consider how reliable electricity is, the value goes up even more. Electric power association members experience a low power outage rate each year—something we’re proud of, considering electricity is a 24-hour-a-day commodity. Of course, we’re working hard to reduce even brief interruptions, increase our service reliability and control costs through innovative technology.
Those cell phones I mentioned earlier? Nearly a third of all U.S. households have four electronic devices, such as cell phones, plugged in and charging, according to the Residential Energy Consumption Survey by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. In the past 30 years, the amount of residential electricity used by appliances and electronics has increased from 17 percent to 31 percent.
More homes than ever use major appliances and central air conditioning. Digital video recorders (DVRs), computers, and multiple televisions have become ubiquitous.
Clearly, our appetite for electricity shows no signs of slowing down. So the next time you flip a switch, use your toaster or run your washing machine, remember the value electricity holds.
And know that your electric power association—a locally owned, member-owned cooperative—is looking out for you. The folks at your cooperative work every day to keep electric bills affordable, control costs through innovation and put you, our members, first.
Oppressive summertime heat has arrived. Now more than ever, electric power association members should be conscious of their energy use. Take steps now to lessen the impact of summertime energy bills on the budget.
We want your electric service to remain affordable so we do our part to control costs in every way possible. But you can exert control over costs yourself by using electricity more efficiently.
Contact your electric power association for specific ways to reduce your energy use without sacrificing comfort this summer.
Michael Callahan, CEO
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