Electricity has its benefits for everyone. Is that what is meant by “beneficial electrification?”
Beneficial electrification is, specifically, using electricity to power devices where to do so means either saving money, benefiting the environment, improving the quality of life and/or supporting a more resilient electrical grid.
The Colorado Rural Electric Association, the statewide trade association for Colorado’s electric cooperatives, is promoting beneficial electrification as part of the Colorado chapter of the Beneficial Electrification League. Co-op power supplier Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Colorado Energy Office and the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project also are members of the Colorado organization.
Recent research suggests that, with more renewable generation on the electric grid and improvements in energy efficiency, electrifying large parts of the economy has become a good thing for the economy and the environment, and that is what the league promotes.
In practical terms, this means it is beneficial for consumers to replace older, inefficient gas and propane furnaces and water heaters with more efficient electric heat pump technology. It is also becoming beneficial to transition to electric vehicles and school buses. In other areas, it is beneficial to switch old diesel industrial equipment for new electric products.
And, as part of the co-ops’ “commitment to community” principle and the proven benefits, electric co-ops are working with their consumer-members on beneficial electrification strategies that will enhance their community’s quality of life while making lower electric bills possible.