Nebraska Public Power District » News http://www.nppd.com Always there when you need us Fri, 06 Jan 2012 14:45:42 +0000 en hourlys 1 NPPD Board meetings to be live-streamed beginning Feb. 9; R-Project transmission line presentation will be highlighted http://www.nppd.com/2017/nppd-board-meetings-to-be-live-streamed-beginning-feb-9-r-project-transmission-line-presentation-will-be-highlighted/ Columbus, Neb. – The monthly meeting of the Board of Directors of the Nebraska Public Power District will now be available to view live through a computer, mobile phone, or other electronic device and all you need is an internet connection. Beginning February 9, all future Board meetings held at the District’s General Office in Columbus  will be available for the public to view live. The first live-streamed meeting will feature an extensive presentation on NPPD’s R-Project transmission line – highlighting the project from its initial submission through the Southwest Power Pool to its current status. NPPD Board meetings are scheduled for the second Thursday of each month. “The Board of Directors agreed during the latter part of 2016 to begin making the meetings more available to the public so that a larger segment of its customers can view the decisions and discussions that go on at the meetings,” said President and CEO Pat Pope. “We have invested in the technology to make the meetings available for live viewing and archiving the meetings so they can be viewed at any time.” “We will focus on the need of the R-Project, which is to provide additional reliability to the existing transmission system as well as reducing the amount of congestion on the transmission system, our public involvement process, the routing process, easements, restoration and continued outreach with landowners,” NPPD Chief Operating Officer Tom Kent added. A third reason for the project is for the potential addition of renewable energy resources – wind and solar power –  in the future. Kent noted that if no renewable resources are interconnected in the future, the R-Project is still needed for reliability and reducing congestion. The Board meeting schedule, agenda, and starting time can found at www.nppd.com/Board on the Monday prior to the Board’s monthly meeting. NPPD’s 2017 tentative Board meeting dates can also be found within this link. A link to view the meeting will appear shortly before the start of the meeting. Viewers may have to adjust their sound depending on the type of device they are using. Anyone unable to watch the meeting live as it airs, can view the meeting archived at  approximately two business days following the meeting. When viewing the meeting through the archived video, viewers can move about the meeting by selecting various topics on the agenda which will take them directly to that specific part of the agenda.]]> Mon, 30 Jan 2017 20:14:23 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2017/nppd-board-meetings-to-be-live-streamed-beginning-feb-9-r-project-transmission-line-presentation-will-be-highlighted/ Safety comes first http://www.nppd.com/2017/safety-comes-first/ NPPD customers are encouraged to call before traveling to offices Columbus, Neb. – The recent “Jupiter” ice storm blanketed the southern and eastern portions of Nebraska Monday morning, with ice making walking and travel in some communities difficult. NPPD requests customers call 1-877-ASK-NPPD on Tuesday to address any electric services they may need. NPPD also encourages customers to use events like this to sign up for NPPD’s mobile app, so as to report power outages, stay up to date on estimated outage restoration times, pay online, or investigate other payment options, such as electronic bill pay, for convenience. “We know a few of our customers still deliver their bills in person,” said Customer Care Business Manage Robyn Tweedy, “but in some areas, even salting the sidewalks did not melt the ice today. The rain washed the salt away and the ice remained, leaving us concerned for our customers’ safety. These conditions could continue through tomorrow, as well.” The ice storm did not impact NPPD locations on the west or northern parts of the state, but NPPD will continue to assess the storm throughout today before making a determination on office openings tomorrow. “NPPD takes the safety of its customers and its employees very seriously,” said Tweedy. “It’s best if our customers contact us first when the weather is bad before venturing out in poor weather conditions.” NPPD Customers and non-customers can download the free app by accessing either the App Store (for Apple users) or Google Play (for Android users). Follow these steps to download: Search for NPPD app using key search terms such as “NPPD,” “NPPD Outages,” “Nebraska Public Power,” or “Nebraska Public Power Outages.” Select the app with the NPPD logo. Follow instructions for installation by tapping an “Install” button. Once the download is complete, the app will appear on the device.  Be sure to register your account and turn ‘Alerts’ on so you have up to date information on outages.]]> Mon, 16 Jan 2017 22:49:31 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2017/safety-comes-first/ York’s Kunze re-elected NPPD Board chairman for 2017 http://www.nppd.com/2017/yorks-kunze-re-elected-nppd-board-chairman-for-2017/ Columbus, Neb. - The Nebraska Public Power District Board of Directors Thursday re-elected Ken Kunze of York as its chairman for 2017. Also elected were Gary Thompson of Beatrice as first vice chairman, Tom Hoff of Broken Bow as second vice chairman, and Jerry Chlopek of Columbus as secretary. “I am pleased to have the opportunity to lead the NPPD Board for another year,” Kunze stated. “Public power is an essential ingredient to the economic strength of Nebraska. NPPD and the Board of Directors continue to seek opportunities that show the importance of public power by providing low cost, reliable, and sustainable electricity to customers throughout the state.” The former mayor of York began his first term of office on the NPPD Board of Directors in 2009 and was re-elected to a second term that began in 2015. Previously, Kunze served as first vice chairman in 2014 and 2015, and was the nuclear committee chairman during 2013 and 2014. He represents Subdivision 7, which consists of York, Polk, Nance, Merrick, Hamilton, Adams and Clay counties. A graduate of the University of Nebraska-Kearney, Kunze owned a real estate company in York for more than 36 years, retiring in 2016. He served as York’s mayor from 1988 to 1996 and also served as president of the Nebraska League of Municipalities in 1995. He was also a member of the Nebraska Power Review Board, serving from 2000 to 2008. The Board of Directors also elected NPPD Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Traci Bender as treasurer, re-appointed Donna Starzec assistant treasurer and Christine Pillen deputy assistant treasurer. Jan Modelski was re-appointed as assistant secretary and Sandra Keefover as deputy assistant secretary. All are from Columbus.]]> Thu, 12 Jan 2017 15:40:09 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2017/yorks-kunze-re-elected-nppd-board-chairman-for-2017/ Kearney HS robotics competition set for Saturday http://www.nppd.com/2017/nppd-co-sponsoring-kearney-hs-robotics-competition-set-for-saturday/ NPPD co-sponsoring Kearney, Neb. – A total of 29 high school and middle school teams will square off in a competition this Saturday. Wrestling?  Swimming?  Neither one. It’s a competition featuring robots that will battle each other at the Kearney High School VEX Robotics competition. The event is jointly sponsored by Kearney High School and Nebraska Public Power District. Teams representing Ravenna Public Schools, Dundy County Stratton Schools, Cross County High School, Lakeview High School, York Middle School, Hampton High School, O’Neill High School, Chase County Schools, Lincoln Public Schools, Battle Creek High School and Kearney High School will be competition. The tournament pits teams of students utilizing robots they have built and engineered to perform certain tasks in a competition against other Nebraska schools. Participating teams also come up with unique names for their teams such as ‘Titanic Swim Team,’ and ‘Robosapiens.’ Saturday’s competition begins at 7:30 a.m., with inspections, robot skills, programming skills challenges followed by qualification rounds beginning at 9:30 a.m. The finals start at 3:15 p.m. followed by awards presentations. NPPD is involved in the program through its Career Outreach Program. “These students build some amazing robots, but this program also helps students learn and understand the engineering, technical and programming skills needed to build a robot.  Students develop teamwork skills, leadership, communications, and sportsmanship – all of which are demonstrated by NPPD employees on a day-to-day basis,” explained NPPD Outreach Programs Specialist Kim Liebig. VEX robotics competition have a different theme each year. This year’s version is called “Starstruck.”  Teams qualify from this competition to the state competition and potentially move to the United States Open championship and to the World Championships scheduled for Louisville, Kentucky, in April.]]> Wed, 11 Jan 2017 16:58:08 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2017/nppd-co-sponsoring-kearney-hs-robotics-competition-set-for-saturday/ Scottsbluff community solar project delayed but construction expected to start soon http://www.nppd.com/2017/scottsbluff-community-solar-project-delayed-but-construction-expected-to-start-soon/ Scottsbluff, Neb. – If you were wondering when the new community solar project in Scottsbluff at the Nebraska Public Power District office was going to be installed . . . it’s still coming. “We have had a delay in construction due to material shortages and delivery issues,” said NPPD Retail General Manager Tim Arlt. “We will be making contact with Scottsbluff customers who have signed up for the program to explain the delay and keep them in the loop as to when the solar unit would begin operation.” Arlt indicated that construction is expected to begin in the next week, and is expected to be completed by the end of the month. Of the solar shares made available to the community, all 135 have been sold and accounted for, although NPPD would continue taking names to be placed on a waiting list. “We had positive feedback from customers in Scottsbluff from the beginning and they showed their interest by becoming part of this community solar project,” Arlt added. While that construction begins soon, drivers are urged to be cautious driving along the construction site in front of the NPPD Operations Center at the intersection of Belt Line Highway and First Avenue.]]> Mon, 09 Jan 2017 20:01:26 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2017/scottsbluff-community-solar-project-delayed-but-construction-expected-to-start-soon/ Robotics competition set for Saturday at Lakeview http://www.nppd.com/2016/robotics-competition-set-for-saturday-at-lakeview/ Lakeview High School, NPPD hosting 40-team competition Columbus, Neb. – When you think of robotics the first thing that could come to mind is Robbie the Robot from “Lost in Space” or some 1960’s era science fiction movie.  But the robots competing at Lakeview High School Saturday will be a little more sophisticated, having been developed through the ideas and skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) of high school and middle school students. A total of 40 high school and middle school teams, representing 12 schools, including Lakeview and Columbus, will square off in the Lakeview High School VEX Tournament. Joining in the competition will be Ravenna, Omaha South, Weeping Water, Omaha Gross Catholic, Cross County, Aurora, Axtell, York, Hampton, and O’Neill. The tournament pits teams of students utilizing robots they have built and engineered to perform certain tasks in a competition against other Nebraska schools. Participating teams also come up with unique names for their teams such as ‘Electric Mayhem,’ ‘Robosapiens,’ or even a salute to “Back to the Future” with ‘The Flux Capacitor.’ The event is co-sponsored by Lakeview High School and Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD). Saturday’s competition begins at 7:30 a.m., with inspections, robot skills and programming skills challenges with qualification rounds beginning at 10:30 a.m. The finals start at 3:30 p.m. followed by awards presentations. NPPD is involved in the program through its Career Outreach Program. “These students build some amazing robots, but this program also helps students learn and understand the engineering, technical and programming skills needed to build a robot.  Students develop teamwork skills, leadership, communications, and sportsmanship – all of which are demonstrated by NPPD employees on a day-to-day basis,” explained NPPD Outreach Programs Specialist Kim Liebig. VEX robotics competition have a different theme each year. This year’s version is called “Starstruck.”  Teams qualify from this competition to the state competition and potentially move to the United States Open championship and to the World Championships scheduled for Louisville, Kentucky, in April.]]> Thu, 15 Dec 2016 18:14:35 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/robotics-competition-set-for-saturday-at-lakeview/ Higginbotham appointed new VP, CNO at Cooper http://www.nppd.com/2016/higginbotham-appointed-new-vp-cno-at-cooper/ Columbus, Neb.-  Nebraska Public Power District’s Board of Directors Thursday approved the appointment of Ken Higginbotham as Vice-President Nuclear and Chief Nuclear Officer at Cooper Nuclear Station, replacing Oscar Limpias, who is leaving to take a senior management position with Entergy. Higginbotham will assume his new position on January 1, 2017. “Maintaining the consistent management model Entergy has provided NPPD since our contract began is important,” President and CEO Pat Pope said in recommending Higginbotham, who has 25 years of experience in the nuclear power industry with Entergy, for the position. “Ken has spent the past four years serving as general manager at Cooper Nuclear Station so he understands the expectations NPPD has. Under his leadership, NPPD will continue the many initiatives that are in place without interruption that have been positive for Cooper and NPPD the past several years.” Limpias has accepted the position of Vice-President of Nuclear Oversight with Entergy, effective before the end of the year. In his new role, he will be responsible for evaluating and monitoring the performance across Entergy's nuclear fleet, including the implementation of Entergy's Nuclear Sustainability Plan to achieve and sustain excellent performance. “Oscar has repeatedly shared his appreciation for Cooper and its employees, as well as the satisfaction he has had in watching the plant achieve as much as it has over the past four years,” said Pope concerning Limpias’ leadership at CNS. “This decision was an extremely difficult one for him; yet, the opportunity to serve in a senior leadership role for Entergy is one he has wanted and cannot refuse.” "I'm grateful for the opportunity to lead such a talented and dedicated team," said Higginbotham. "I look forward to my expanded role with Cooper and the District. Cooper is one of the best performing plants in the country, and I'm excited for the chance to lead the station to new levels of success." Higginbotham has worked in the nuclear power industry in numerous positions the past 25 years with Entergy at the company’s River Bend Station in Louisiana and at the Grand Gulf Nuclear Station in Mississippi. A veteran of the United States Navy, he has worked various positions within the Navy’s nuclear fleet. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in nuclear science and engineering and a Master of Science degree in management from the University of Maryland University College.]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 15:11:51 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/higginbotham-appointed-new-vp-cno-at-cooper/ NPPD makes retail cost of service adjustments for 2017 but no overall rate increase scheduled http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-makes-retail-cost-of-service-adjustments-for-2017-but-no-overall-rate-increase-scheduled/ Wholesale customers to see less than one percent increase Columbus, Neb. – For the fourth year in a row, retail customers of Nebraska Public Power District will see no increase in overall retail rates for 2017 following approval Thursday by NPPD’s Board of Directors. The Board approved a slight overall average increase of 0.6% increase to its wholesale customers. While there will be no overall retail electric rate increase, rate changes were approved to more accurately reflect the cost to serve individual customer classes, including an increase in customer charges. “Individual retail customers will be affected by the increase in their monthly customer charge. At the same time energy charges will be reduced in many customer classes to offset the impact of the customer charge increase. NPPD’s personnel have made strides to improve efficiencies and reduce certain distribution costs. This was a big contributor leading NPPD to another year of achieving stability in our retail rates,” said NPPD General Manager of Retail Tim Arlt. Higher transmission costs are the main driver behind the less than one percent increase rates to wholesale customers, which are primarily public power districts and municipalities that purchase electricity from NPPD for their end-use customers. NPPD President and CEO Pat Pope said employees are committed to finding and implementing long-term cost cutting measures, while not impacting service or reliability or jeopardizing safety for customers or themselves. “NPPD continues to identify ways that help keep our rates stable,” Pope explained. “We look under every rock and turn over every stone to ensure our customers receive reliable electricity at competitive prices.” More than 80 communities in NPPD’s service territory are served at retail and receive a monthly bill directly from NPPD. These include communities such as Scottsbluff, Kearney, York, Norfolk and Plattsmouth. NPPD also has wholesale power supply agreements with 46 municipalities and 25 rural public power districts and rural cooperatives that rely totally or partially on NPPD for transmission services.   Editor’s Note: A complete list of retail and wholesale customers by communities, public power districts and co-operatives can be found at http://www.nppd.com/about-us/who-we-serve. ]]> Thu, 10 Nov 2016 21:22:29 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-makes-retail-cost-of-service-adjustments-for-2017-but-no-overall-rate-increase-scheduled/ NPPD says “be prepared” before the snow flies http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-says-be-prepared-before-the-snow-flies/ Columbus, Neb. – Ensuring you have electricity starts by making smart and safe choices. “When weather conditions create power outages, safety is at the forefront for our lineworkers,” said Nebraska Public Power District’s Director of Safety and Human Performance Chris Overman. “Our crews prepare for storms before they happen and will work around the clock to safely restore power when areas sustain an outage due to high winds, snow and ice during the winter months.” Thursday, November 10, is Nebraska’s Winter Storm Awareness Day, and while line workers are always focused on safety, being prepared for potential power outages should be on the minds of Nebraskans statewide. “Most Nebraskans understand the potential damage winter storms can cause and not to mention the possibility of power outages,” Overman pointed out. “But if the power goes out, we want our customers, friends and neighbors to take precautions and be prepared.” Even before winter comes storming across the plains, NPPD encourages homeowners to assemble a number of items such as a flashlight, extra batteries, a portable radio, at least one gallon of water, and a small supply of food. Should the electricity be off for an extended amount of time, “it is best to keep your refrigerator or freezer doors closed to keep food cold,” he said. Some Nebraskans have portable generators, yet NPPD reminds them to never run a generator inside a home or garage. “If you are going to have a generator available for use,” Overman advised, “make sure it is properly installed by a licensed electrician.” He adds using a barbecue grill inside a home or garage is dangerous and should never be done. If your power goes out, a good practice is to disconnect major electrical equipment and appliances to provide an added margin of protection in case of unexpected power surges when the power comes back on. “You may also consider leaving one light connected and turned on so you will know when power is restored,” Overman added. Finally, if a power pole falls or the conductor comes loose, stay away from it, call your local utility, and wait until professionally trained crews are able to remove the line. Power lines should be considered “live,” which means they hold the potential of electrocution. For more information regarding power outage and winter safety tips, go to “Power Outages” in the upper right corner of www.nppd.com.]]> Tue, 08 Nov 2016 19:38:24 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-says-be-prepared-before-the-snow-flies/ NPPD to issue $180 million in bonds October 18 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-expects-to-issue-180-million-in-bonds-october-18/ Columbus, Neb. – The Nebraska Public Power District plans to issue approximately $120 million of fixed-rate, tax-exempt bonds, and approximately $60 million of fixed-rate, taxable bonds on Tuesday, October 18. The bond sale will include an order period for retail and institutional investors. Proceeds from the tax-exempt bond sale will be used to finance the costs of generation and transmission capital additions to NPPD’s system, and to refund a portion of Commercial Paper Notes. Proceeds from the taxable bond sale will be used to fund a portion of NPPD’s liability associated with its other postemployment benefits. Bond proceeds will also be used to pay financing costs. It is currently anticipated that the bonds will be issued in $5,000 denominations or any integral multiple thereof. NPPD has selected Morgan Stanley as its senior bond underwriter. Other underwriting firms include Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, Goldman, Sachs & Co., Wells Fargo Bank, National Association, Ameritas Investment Corp., D.A. Davidson & Co., Piper Jaffray & Co., RBC Capital Markets, and US Bancorp. The tax-exempt bonds will be repaid over a 30-year period, and the taxable bonds will be repaid over an 18-year period. Individuals interested in purchasing the bonds should contact their broker or financial advisor. NPPD’s Preliminary Official Statement NPPD’s Preliminary Official Statement and the information contained therein is subject to completion, amendment or other change without any notice. The bonds described therein may not be sold, nor may offers to buy be accepted prior to the time the Official Statement is delivered in final form. Under no circumstances shall the Preliminary Official Statement constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of any offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of these bonds in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the applicable securities laws of any such jurisdiction. A Preliminary Official Statement is available for review at  http://www.nppd.com/assets/publications/2016PrelimOS/.]]> Thu, 13 Oct 2016 19:15:16 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-expects-to-issue-180-million-in-bonds-october-18/ NPPD will gain efficiencies and improve customer service by consolidating its Ogallala operations http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-will-gain-efficiencies-and-improve-customer-service-by-consolidating-its-ogallala-operations/ Columbus, Neb. – Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) is committed to the Ogallala community and it shows with its recent purchase of the former Bomgaars retail store for a future consolidated facility. Following building renovations, the facility, located at 300 Clarice Drive, will house all of NPPD’s Ogallala operations in one location. The new Ogallala Operations Center (OOC) will consolidate what once was three different offices — a retail customer service/distribution center, a substation garage/shop building, and a telecommunications/substation technician building. "Consolidating our operations will provide efficiencies and improve customer service," said Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Tom Kent. "By renovating an existing facility like the former Bomgaars building, the District is maximizing our customer value and getting a prominent location when compared to a greenfield facility. The building will need renovations to meet our requirements, but it will provide a solid foundation for operations in the Ogallala area." The new location provides high visibility for NPPD and its customers and continues NPPD’s presence in Ogallala and the surrounding communities it serves. Kent said the OOC will provide an additional layer of safety for NPPD’s employees as the District’s vehicles will be housed inside the new facility, which will also save on weather-related vehicle maintenance. This fall, NPPD will hire an architecture/engineering firm to assist in the redesign of the facility. In the spring of 2017, NPPD will hire a contractor to perform renovations on the building to meet NPPD’s operational requirements. NPPD expects to have renovations to the existing facility complete and ready for move-in by fall of 2017.]]> Wed, 12 Oct 2016 17:50:27 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-will-gain-efficiencies-and-improve-customer-service-by-consolidating-its-ogallala-operations/ Harvest season a time to look up and around http://www.nppd.com/2016/harvest-season-a-time-to-look-up-and-around/ Be on the lookout for power lines when using farm equipment Columbus, Neb.- Harvest season is one of the busiest times of year for farmers—and can be one of the most dangerous. Nebraska Public Power District urges farm operators to be aware of overhead power lines, keep farm equipment safely away from the lines, and know what to do if accidental contact is made with power lines. A key factor for those harvesting crops is to look up and around when working in the fields this fall .Taking a few minutes to look for overhead electric lines may be life-saving time well spent. So what are some the dangers that farmers can encounter. End rows are an area where farm equipment can accidentally become entangled in the power lines. Remaining inside the equipment until help arrives is critical to everyone’s safety. Those involved in harvesting work should understand any contact with power lines carries the potential of a serious or fatal accident. Electricity can arc to the equipment if it comes close to the line. “It’s always best to call for help, and wait until the local electric utility arrives to make sure the line is de-energized,” said NPPD Transmission and Distribution Manager Joel Dagerman. If the power line is energized and you step outside, your body becomes the path and electrocution could happen. “Even if a power line is on the ground, there is still the potential for the area nearby to be energized unless there’s fire or imminent risk of fire.” If you must exit the vehicle, the appropriate action is to jump – not step – with both feet hitting the ground at the same time. Jump clear, without touching the vehicle and ground at the same time, and continue to shuffle to safety, keeping both feet together as you leave the area. Dagerman explained that voltage from a downed line tend to be like the ripples in a pond or lake, the voltage diminishes the farther out it is from the source and at no time should anyone touch the equipment and the ground at the same time. Never should the operator simply step out of the vehicle — the person must jump clear. NPPD urges farmers to take safety precautions before entering the fields to begin harvest operations.
  • Each day, review all farm activities and work practices that will take place around power lines and remind all workers to take precautions. Start each morning by planning the day’s work during a tailgate safety meeting. Know what jobs will happen near power lines, and have a plan to keep the assigned workers safe.
  • Know the location of power lines, and when setting up the farm equipment, be at least 20 feet away from them. Contact your local power provider if you feel this distance cannot be achieved.
  • Use care when raising augers or the bed of a grain truck. It can be difficult to estimate distance, and sometimes a power line is closer than it looks. When moving large equipment or high loads near a power line, always use a spotter to make certain contact is not made with the line.
  • Always adjust portable augers or elevators to their lowest possible level – under 14 feet – before moving or transporting them. Variables like wind, uneven ground, shifting weight, or other conditions can combine to create an unexpected result.
  • Be aware of increased height when loading and transporting larger modern tractors with higher antennas.
  • Never attempt to raise or move a power line to clear a path! If power lines near your property have sagged over time, call your utility to repair them.
  • As in any outdoor work, be careful not to raise any equipment such as ladders, poles, or rods into power lines. Remember, non-metallic materials such as lumber, tree limbs, tires, ropes, and hay will conduct electricity depending on dampness and dust and dirt contamination.
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Mon, 03 Oct 2016 19:31:05 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/harvest-season-a-time-to-look-up-and-around/
Volt Bolt 5K race will aid Pennies for Power program http://www.nppd.com/2016/volt-bolt-5k-race-will-aid-pennies-for-power-program/ Kearney, Neb. - If you are a runner or a walker, mark down Saturday, Oct. 15, as a day you can be of help to those less fortunate. On that day, Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) will host the 1st Annual Volt Bolt 5K road race at Yanney Heritage Park in Kearney. Proceeds from the event go towards NPPD’s Pennies for Power energy assistance program. The Volt Bolt fires up at 9 a.m. beginning at the Rotary Shelter. Participants will run/walk the trail along the Kearney Whitewater Park and scenic Turkey Creek east to the hotel district and back. Registration fee for the race is $25 per participant with race day registration being $30 per participant. “The beneficiaries of the race are the runners and walkers who will cover more than three miles by foot and by their participation they are helping those in the community who are disadvantaged,” said Scott Margheim, coordinator of the race for NPPD. “Registration fees for the race go to the Pennies for Power program helping to pay energy-related expenses for those in need. In Buffalo County during 2015, $7,500 was used to help with energy assistance.” Since 2002, NPPD’s Pennies for Power energy assistance program has helped disadvantaged families pay energy-related expenses. The program is administered by the Nebraska 2-1-1 hosted by the United Way of the Midlands who screens applicants and determines program eligibility. Funds for the program come from donations from NPPD customers and NPPD employees. Besides the race competition, there will be a Family Power Walk ($10 per family) plus an Energy Fest event celebrating Public Power Month. Events include live-line safety trailer demonstrations, a little lineworker’s rodeo, solar car races, along with a variety of interactive activities for individuals of all ages. Awards will be presented to the top three individuals in each age group by gender, with a separate award for the first overall male and female finisher. Age groups include 19 and under, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, and 70 and up. Packet pickup and race day registration will be available at Yanney Park from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. the day of the Volt Bolt 5K. Registration can be also be done online at www.nppd.com/volt-bolt.]]> Wed, 28 Sep 2016 19:59:55 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/volt-bolt-5k-race-will-aid-pennies-for-power-program/ Oklahoma earthquakes leads to “Unusual Event” declared at NPPD’s Cooper Nuclear Station http://www.nppd.com/2016/oklahoma-earthquakes-leads-to-unusual-event-declared-at-nppds-cooper-nuclear-station/ Brownville, Neb. – Nebraska Public Power District's (NPPD) Cooper Nuclear Station declared an “Unusual Event” today at 7:10 a.m. as a result of this morning's earthquake in Oklahoma. Minor tremors were felt at the plant which required plant operators to declare the event. There is no threat to the public or plant personnel, and the station continues to operate safely. Per procedure, station personnel have increased monitoring of plant equipment. No damage to the plant or equipment has been noted. The plant’s Emergency Plan is being followed and appropriate local, county, state, and federal agencies have been notified. "All nuclear power plants are designed to withstand the historically worst-case scenarios for the regions where they are built," said CNS Emergency Preparedness Manager Jim Stough. "Cooper Nuclear Station was designed and built to withstand earthquakes of this magnitude, and our team members are highly trained to respond to an array of events, including earthquakes. Our personnel and the plant's monitoring and safety systems all responded exactly as intended." An "Unusual Event" is defined as unusual events, minor in nature, which have occurred or are in progress which indicate a potential degradation in the level of station safety. If placed on a scale of 1 to 4, with 1 being the least serious level of an emergency and 4 being the most serious level of an emergency, an Unusual Event would equal a 1. County or state officials will inform the public if conditions were to change and any protective actions become necessary via radio stations associated with the Emergency Alert System (EAS), such as KFAB, Omaha, 1110 AM, and KFEQ, St. Joseph, Missouri, 680 AM. Cooper Nuclear Station is located three miles southeast of Brownville near the Missouri River. It is owned and operated by the Nebraska Public Power District, with headquarters in Columbus.]]> Tue, 06 Sep 2016 14:15:57 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/oklahoma-earthquakes-leads-to-unusual-event-declared-at-nppds-cooper-nuclear-station/ NPPD closing roadway at Lake Maloney dam to vehicles http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-closing-roadway-at-lake-maloney-dam-to-vehicles/ North Platte, Neb. – The safety of walkers, bicyclists and fishing enthusiasts is the primary reason, Nebraska Public Power District will permanently close the gravel roadway that runs along the north front of the Lake Maloney Dam to public traffic. Work will begin Monday, July 18, with the installation of gates designed to prevent public motor vehicles access to the roadway. “The roadway below the dam has received extensive damage due to the high volume of rain the area has received,” said Chuck Troia, manager of water systems and renewable energy for NPPD,. “Parts of the road and shoulder were under water, and several individuals used the location to conduct off road mud trailing, resulting in even more damage to the roadway and shoulder area.” The roadway was constructed years ago for the purpose of allowing NPPD maintenance vehicles to gain access to the dam. Troia added, “Many people use it as a short cut to get from one side of the lake to the other, sometimes at high speed, and it was not designed for that purpose. That becomes a safety issue for the District.” Troia pointed out the gravel roadway is used by individuals who live around the lake and who like to camp, walk, or to ride bicycles. Fishermen also utilize the dam. “We don’t want to have vehicles going through at high speeds attempting to do mud trailing and damage the road. More importantly, we don’t want any member of the public hurt. Safety is our priority here. We want to eliminate the risk of any pedestrian or cyclist being hit by a vehicle. Closing the road to such uses eliminates the risk,” he said. Troia pointed out that NPPD will be putting up a gate that will block access by motor vehicles onto the gravel roadway. Reflective material will also be placed on and around the gates for safety purposes at night. There will be a gate available to allow access for walkers and cyclists. NPPD vehicles will be able to access the gravel road to conduct maintenance work. There will be some parking spots developed and turn arounds will be developed at each end of the road for public use Troia noted while there will no longer be public access to the road, the paved county road (West Lake Road), to the north side of the dam, will allow for traffic to get from one side of the lake to the other.]]> Thu, 14 Jul 2016 18:02:01 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-closing-roadway-at-lake-maloney-dam-to-vehicles/ Open Range Beef gets incentivized by NPPD http://www.nppd.com/2016/open-range-beef-gets-incentivized-by-nppd/ Gordon, Neb. – Nebraska Public Power District presented an EnergyWiseSM  incentive check through its Industrial Process Incentive program Thursday to Open Range Beef of Gordon, Neb., following a review and implementation of the company’s efforts to become more energy efficient. NPPD Account Manager Terry Rajewich presented a check in the amount of $10,802 to Jill Noetzelman  of Open Range Beef, following a review and implementation of improved efficiency of the company’s compressed air system used in its operations. NPPD estimated that Open Range Beef would have a reduction of 154,313 kilowatt hours of electricity in their operation with a new system that has been installed and is in operation. Helping customers find ways to use energy wisely is a key component of NPPD’s business strategy. “In addition to helping customers save money and being the right thing to do, energy efficiency and conservation is an important aspect of NPPD’s business,” said Rajewich. “NPPD is pleased to partner with Open Range Beef on this energy efficiency initiative, and we’re very excited at the success they’ve achieved in reducing energy usage now and in the future. We hope this success will motivate other customers to follow the same path.” In an industrial plant energy efficiency improvement projects often are unique and do not fit a prescriptive program. Each manufacturing plant has certain characteristics that can require an individual approach to projects. For this reason, NPPD developed the Industrial Process Incentive to assist in improving the energy efficiency of manufacturing plants. For more information on this program and other energy efficiency opportunities and details, go to www.nppd.com/save-energy.]]> Thu, 09 Jun 2016 19:30:03 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/open-range-beef-gets-incentivized-by-nppd/ Media Advisory http://www.nppd.com/2016/media-advisory/ Fri, 03 Jun 2016 18:14:52 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/media-advisory/ Don’t move a mussel! http://www.nppd.com/2016/dont-move-a-mussel/ NPPD encourages boaters to clean, drain, and dry their boats Columbus, Neb. – Don’t move a mussel! That’s the message Nebraska Public Power District is sending to recreational boaters and fishermen to help prevent the spread of the invasive zebra mussels into lakes and waterways of Nebraska. Moving a mussel can result in problems for both the body of water and its uses for utilities and recreational activities. The zebra mussel is one of many invasive species that has clogged cooling intake structures of power plants and other utilities along the Great Lakes as well as inflicting millions of dollars in damage to recreation, water systems and fisheries. Over the past few years, zebra mussels have been found in or near Nebraska waters, most recently in 2015 at Lewis & Clark Lake along the Nebraska-South Dakota border. Why is this important to NPPD?  The District utilizes water in the generation of electricity at several locations including Gerald Gentleman Station by Sutherland Reservoir, at the North Platte Hydroelectric Plant, and at Cooper Nuclear Station near Brownville along the Missouri River. Keeping these aquatic invasive species at bay and preventing clogging of intake lines is the better way to provide low cost, reliable electricity rather than spending ratepayers’ money to control the species. “We have been fortunate over the past few years that we have not been impacted at any of our power plants, but we need boaters to be aware of the potential of unknowingly transporting aquatic hitchhikers,” NPPD Environmental Manager Joe Citta explained. Citta says boaters should follow three steps to make a difference in keeping Nebraska waters free from zebra mussels and other invasive species. “They need to clean the boat, drain the boat, and dry the boat,” he said. “If it’s done properly, and systematically, this can be accomplished in a short amount of time.” The Nebraska Invasive Species Program recommends the following:
  • Clean after boating and before leaving the launch to remove all visible plants, animals, fish and mud from the boat, trailer or other equipment and dispose of the debris in a suitable trash container or on dry land. Power washing the boat and trailer is another option.
  • Drain after boating and before leaving the launch by draining water from the bilge, live wells, ballast tanks and any other equipment holding water. If draining water not an option, using a cup of diluted bleach will kill off the zebra mussel.
  • Dry your boat, trailer, and all equipment completely before arriving at the next launch ramp to go boating or fishing.
Tips for preventing zebra mussels being introduced into Nebraska bodies of water are available through the Nebraska Invasive Species Program at www.neinvasives.com.]]>
Mon, 23 May 2016 16:30:43 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/dont-move-a-mussel/
Arbor Day coming early to Kearney http://www.nppd.com/2016/arbor-day-coming-early-to-kearney/ City, NPPD, students will plant trees at Horizon Middle School Kearney, Neb. – Arbor Day is going to come about 24 hours early in Kearney. While Arbor Day is observed this Friday, the City of Kearney, Nebraska Public Power District, along with elementary and middle school students will be involved in an Arbor Day event this Thursday, April 28 at Horizon Middle School. Beginning at 2 p.m. Thursday, students from Park Elementary School and Horizon Middle School will assist in planting trees, as well as learning the importance of trees and how to be safe around them. Besides helping to plant trees, students will participate by providing posters and skits related to Arbor Day. The event will be open to the public with a welcome from Kearney city officials. Alan Roesler, City of Kearney Forester, and Scott DeWald, District Forester with the Nebraska Forestry Service, will provide students with information about proper tree planting tips, as well as information on tree and vegetation planting around power lines. Kearney was chosen for the 2016 event to plant trees needed at the Horizon Middle School. Four trees are being donated by NPPD to be planted at the school. “Planting trees at the school, and recognizing Arbor Day, is a positive partnership for the Kearney community,” said Roesler. “We appreciate the involvement of all the students participating, as well as NPPD’s help in organizing this event.” “Hosting the annual Arbor Day event is a great opportunity to show NPPD’s support for the Kearney community,” said NPPD Account Manager Stan Clouse. “It is a great way to explain and teach customers and school children about NPPD’s vegetation management practices and promote electrical safety and education of the hazards of planting trees near overhead power lines and other electric facilities.” NPPD is a member in good standing of the Tree Line USA program, which recognizes electric utilities that demonstrate practices which protect and enhance America’s rural and urban trees. NPPD’s membership in the Tree Line USA program, sponsored by the National Arbor Day Foundation, provides an avenue to help promote the safety and reliability of power lines through public education programs about the proper planting of trees and vegetation. NPPD was recently recognized by Tree Line USA for the 11th consecutive year for meeting the organization’s standards including training employees in quality tree care and educating the public on tree planting for energy conservation and appropriate planting near power lines. NPPD has been recognized over the years for its professional arboriculture practices along power lines. The utility maintains vegetation on more than 5,000 miles of transmission and sub-transmission lines across the state to ensure a reliable electric system. This program protects the public safety for customers, remains compliant with federal regulations, and minimizes the cost of future maintenance. NPPD follows proper tree-trimming guidelines set by the National Arbor Day Foundation, Utility Arborists Association, International Society of Arboriculture, and the Tree Care Industry Association.]]> Tue, 26 Apr 2016 15:13:51 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/arbor-day-coming-early-to-kearney/ NPPD line techs showcase skills, place third at industry rodeo http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-line-techs-showcase-skills-place-third-at-industry-rodeo/ Columbus, NE – There are no barrels or bulls, and instead of chaps and cowboy boots, contestants wear hooks, harnesses, and hard hats. But for the Nebraska Public Power District’s (NPPD), the 15th annual American Public Power Association Lineworker’s Rodeo was a chance to  test the utility’s journeymen and apprentices against their peers and earn a third place finish. Held April 1-2 in Minneapolis, MN, the rodeo was the largest in the event’s history, drawing 130 apprentice line technicians and 63 teams representing public power utilities throughout the U.S. At the rodeo, lineworkers compete for professional recognition in various events, attend training classes and practice essential skills in a safe environment. Members of NPPD’s journeymen team were Brian Caba (Plattsmouth), Jared Rojewski (Aurora), Bryce Stoltenberg (Scottsbluff), and Lee Conroy (Ainsworth). Apprentice team members were Tyler Brown (Loup City) and Taylor Sudbeck (Norfolk).  Todd Keller (Bassett) and Trevor Roth (York) judged two of the contests. “Having guys from different departments and parts of the state is part of our success,” said Caba. “The work is the same but everyone has their own way of doing things. We take ideas and work practices from each and blend it all into one plan. And then work that plan.” The team practiced together only nine days over the course of a few months before competing against teams who work together every day and some who go to the rodeo every year. Yet, NPPD’s team practice paid off. The journeyman team earned a third place trophy in the jumper replacement competition and took home a sixth place overall, missing fifth place, by 21 seconds.  NPPD’s apprentices placed eighth and 16th overall. According to Roth, the journeyman jumper replacement event tests communications between the climbers and the groundmen. Effective communications allow them to compete the job in a safer and shorter duration. The event also tests such skillsets as climbing, decision making and trust among crew members to complete the task. Other rodeo events included hurtman rescue, pole top pin insulator change out, fused cutout relocation, transformer change out, crossarm change out, and an obstacle course. In addition to showcasing the pride they have in their work, team members gain personally and professionally from their participation. “Participating in the rodeo gives me the opportunity to learn from other lineman,” said Conroy.  “If I see someone doing something successfully or using a piece of equipment that works well, I can share that with my colleagues at NPPD.  It also gives me the opportunity to network with my colleagues from across the state to discuss what their work groups are doing to make NPPD successful.” Nebraska’s public power utilities will hold their own rodeo on Aug. 27, 2016, at the Nebraska State Fair. To view a video about APPA’s 2016 Lineworker’s Rodeo, visit: http://www.publicpower.org/Events/interiorsidebar.cfm?ItemNumber=45591&navItemNumber=41054]]> Tue, 12 Apr 2016 18:54:25 +0000 http://www.nppd.com/2016/nppd-line-techs-showcase-skills-place-third-at-industry-rodeo/