Overview of Columbia’s Electric Utility
Electricity is generated at a power station or power plant from fossil fuels or renewable resources. Approximately 90% of Columbia’s energy comes from sources outside the city. Once the power is generated, it has to be moved to where it is going to be used. Large amounts of power are transferred with electric transmission lines which feed into substations where transformers step down the power to lower voltages. From there, power is delivered to individual electric customers by distribution system.
Columbia Water & Light is responsible for construction and maintenance of transmission lines, substations and distribution lines. Our crews are available around the clock to repair unexpected problems as quickly as possible.
Electricity generation is the process of generating electric power from sources of primary energy. For electric utilities, it is the first process in the delivery of electricity to consumers. The other processes as transmission, distribution, energy storage and recovery using pumped-storage methods are normally carried out by the electric power industry. Electricity is most often generated at a power station by electromechanical generators, primarily driven by heat engines fueled by combustion or nuclear fission but also by other means such as the kinetic energy of flowing water and wind.
The electric transmission network delivers electricity to Columbia’s grid from outside suppliers. Columbia Water & Light is in the control area of the Midcontinent System Operator (MISO). MISO is an independent system operator that controls the flow of electricity in northern part of the Midwest.
Constructing a new building? See the Facilities Connection Requirements for the electric system.