When we think about the people keeping our lights on, most of us think of the lineworkers who build, maintain, and repair the power lines running through our communities. Behind the scenes, though, it takes another crew of dedicated men and women to keep that power flowing — and that’s something we can all appreciate as we sit in our air-conditioned homes during the hot and humid “dog days” of summer.
Buckeye Power, the generation cooperative founded by all of Ohio’s electric distribution cooperatives, owns and operates three large (and quite different) power plants that produce the electricity we consume. Nearly 300 people work at those plants to make sure we can put electricity onto the grid the instant it’s needed. Their roles vary, but their mission is very much the same: to produce electricity in a safe, reliable, cost-competitive, and environmentally responsible way. The plants are led by a pair of managers who bring all those roles together to accomplish that mission — a complicated task, to be sure. Check out our "Power brokers" story in this month's issue to get to know them a little better and maybe get a glimpse behind the curtain of our operations.
Much of the work at our power plants is the routine, day-to-day business of generating electricity: providing fuel, monitoring equipment, and ensuring that the plant’s environmental controls are working as designed. But we also put a lot of work into planning for the future. Certainly, we examine what will be needed next week, next month, and for the upcoming winter, but we’re also looking years into the future to plan repairs, replacements, and upgrades of the many complex systems it takes to operate these large-scale electric generators and their necessary supporting equipment.
It takes a multitude of people with an incredibly diverse set of skills to supply the power your co-op delivers to you, reliably providing affordable electricity at the exact moment you need it — whenever that may be. Everyone plays an important role, so I’ll use this opportunity to honor the dedicated power plant employees at our Cardinal, Mone, and Greenville facilities. Thanks, team!