PECO to invest $6B to enhance infrastructure, further improve reliability

During the next five years, PECO, the Philadelphia Electric Company, will be investing approximately $6 billion across its electric and natural gas systems.

It’s part of an ongoing effort to modernize and enhance the local electric infrastructure, which has improved reliability for customers. Last year, the number of electric outages in PECO’s service territory dropped 11 percent, while the average length of the outage length fell by 16 percent. These are among the lowest totals in the company’s history.

“We know our customers are counting on us to deliver the energy they need to power their lives, and the pandemic has underscored the critical nature of our work,” PECO Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer John McDonald said. “The strategic investments we’re making during the next several years will continue to enhance service reliability for our customers and will build upon our strong foundation of providing safe, reliable, affordable, and clean energy for our customers.”

The improvement in reliability has a lot to do with the company’s investment in new technologies and its employees. Among the new technologies, the company uses drones to enable more efficient equipment inspections and faster damage assessments after storms. It is also installing stronger poles and tree-resistant aerial cable. Further, PECO has begun installing specialized equipment, known as reclosers, that can automatically restore service or isolate damage. To date, more than 3,000 reclosers have been installed across PECO’s service territory. These reclosers have avoided more than two million power outages over the last two years.

The investments will continue as the company will be investing approximately $6 billion across its electric and natural gas systems. The investments will go toward equipment inspection, targeted infrastructure enhancements, corrective maintenance, new equipment, and vegetation management. Specifically, as part of PECO’s Reliability & Resiliency Plan, about $1.36 billion will go toward targeted reliability-focused electric system infrastructure investments between now and 2025. These initiatives should further reduce outages, modernize the electric grid, and support the adoption of clean energy resources.

PECO, based in Philadelphia, delivers energy to more than 1.6 million electric customers and more than 532,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Dave Kovaleski

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