Western Farmers Electric Cooperative contractor crews work on damaged areas in the Moore, Okla.

How to help after a disaster

The long road to recovery continues for Oklahomans impacted by the massive tornado in Moore and other twisters that hit the state in mid-May. Electric cooperatives have an organized disaster ­recovery system built into their cooperative DNA and official ­network. But what if you want to help out after a disaster like the one caused by a historic series of ...Read More


Jo-Carroll Energy, Farmers Mutual Electric complete merger

Two electric cooperatives in northwest Illinois have merged to serve a combined 21,372 electric members. Elizabeth, Ill.-based Jo-Carroll Energy and Geneseo, Ill.-based Farmers Mutual Electric—the state’s oldest electric cooperative—­completed the merger on March 31. The integrated ­cooperative will ­operate as Jo-Carroll Energy. The newly joined system held its first annual meeting on April 14, following some three years of ­cooperative ...Read More


Farmer’s markets growing in Illinois

More than 3,000 farmer’s markets across the country offer consumers farm-fresh, ­affordable, convenient and healthy products. Farmer’s markets serve as ­integral links between urban, ­suburban, and rural com­munities and the ­popularity of the markets continues to rise, ­especially in Illinois, which now ranks third in the nation for the number of farmer’s markets. To further the expansion and ­awareness of ...Read More


Lawmakers back co-ops on water heater rule

Electric cooperatives are urging the Department of Energy to consider alter­natives to a new rule, due to take effect April 2015, that stands to phase out large-capacity 55 ­gallon and above electric water heaters that save energy and money for co-op members in demand response programs. Nearly 100 lawmakers on Capitol Hill are backing rural electric cooperatives when it comes ...Read More


290th birthday of the Illinois National Guard

On May 9, Governor Pat Quinn honored the 290th birthday of the Illinois National Guard, saluting its ­members who embody the ­democratic ideal of the citizen soldier. The Illinois National Guard has a dual mission: The state mission, under the governor’s command, is to respond to domestic emergencies in Illinois or elsewhere through cooperative agreements between states; and the federal ...Read More

IMG_0015 Prairie State Shimkus

Prairie State Generating Company celebrates first year

Prairie State Generating Company celebrated its ­inaugural meeting May 2 at the Lively Grove energy campus that includes a state of the art 1,600-megawatt generating facility and coal mine. The ­facility is owned by nine member owners, including Southern Illinois Power Cooperative and Prairie Power, Inc., which are both not-for-profit, ­member-owned Illinois ­generation and transmission ­cooperatives. Six not-for-profit municipal power ­organizations ...Read More

Seven students win electric co-op scholarships

Don Wood, Vice President of Government Relations for the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives, announced the names of the seven winners of the 2013 Thomas H. Moore IEC Memorial Scholarship in May. “There were hundreds of applications received this year and, as always, a large number were extremely qualified applicants,” said Wood. The amount of each scholarship is $1,500. Anyone ...Read More

How to pick a fuel-sipping vehicle

The Energy Department and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on December 6 released the 2013 Fuel Economy Guide, giving consumers information to help them choose the most fuel-efficient and lowest greenhouse gas-emitting vehicles. The 2013 models include efficient and low-emission vehicles in a variety of classes and sizes, but notable this year is the growing availability of hybrids and ...Read More


Ground breaking held for new cooperative solar facility

On May 10, Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative held a ground breaking for its 500-­kilowatt solar facility that is being built south of Winchester on Illinois Highway 106, next to one of the substations that serves the co-op’s 7,800 members. The complete solar array will cover four acres. At full capacity, it could ­provide enough electricity for about 170 homes on ...Read More


National Lineman Appreciation Day

The U.S. Senate in recognizing April 18, 2013, as National Lineman Appreciation Day passed a resolution honoring lineworkers for their efforts at keeping power flowing. Across the nation, more than 19,000 men and women maintain 2.5 million miles of line for electric co-ops, public power districts and public utility districts. A bill introduced by U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and ...Read More