Lake Region Electric Cooperative is an electric distribution utility that operates within a much larger, complex electric grid system. Because we view the reliability of your electric service to be an imperative, we want you to be aware of the many system improvements that have been undertaken in conjunction with Great River Energy (GRE), our wholesale power and electric transmission provider to substations in Lake Region’s service territory.
Investments are being made in four substation projects that will benefit more than 18,400 members or approximately 65% of Lake Region’s membership. The goal of these projects is to increase system reliability. The combined price tag is approximately $21.2 million. The projects will minimize risk exposures and create diversity in how electricity is transmitted to our area.
Besides substation upgrades, aggressive steps in vegetation management along power line right-of-way and the installation of raptor and animal guards on transmission lines are also making a significant difference in reducing power outages.
On the distribution level, Lake Region also has a systematic tree clearing schedule along our right-of-way, as well as pole replacements. Lake Region replaced all 7,432 cutouts, a utility fusing device, reducing cutout-related outages from 62 per year to zero. Replacing the cutouts cost approximately $1,596,884. As you can see, both Lake Region Electric Cooperative and GRE are committed to improving system reliability!
Construction of the new GRE Schuster Lake Transmission Substation, located north-west of Perham, was completed in November 2019. This $6.8 million project by GRE will increase reliability to the Frazee, Dora, Dent, and Perham distribution substations.
Refurbishing of the GRE Henning Transmission Substation is another $1.2 million project by GRE. Located near Henning, the upgrades at this site will result in better reliability for the Stalker Lake Substation.
GRE will be rebuilding the Frazee Transmission Substation this year to improve reliability and increase voltage support for more than half of Lake Region’s distribution substations. The project, located near Frazee, will cost $10.2 million.
Lake Region also has a distribution substation upgrade project that is being coordinated with a GRE transmission line upgrade. The $3 million Lake Eunice Distribution Substation serves 2,079 members and is located near Lake Eunice and Pelican Lake. The work will be completed in 2021, increasing service reliability for all members fed from this substation.
The electric utility business is interconnected and complex, a situation that will only increase further with time and technology. You have our assurance that Lake Region Electric Cooperative views the reliability of our electric service as an imperative. While we cannot guarantee against the occurrence of power outages, we are taking action to diminish their occurrence and duration. Storms and such will still happen, but our employees stand at the ready, 24/7/365, to swing into action.