President’s Message – July 2021

Jimmy Black headshotEven though I am a part of the energy industry, like most people, I still don’t think much about the electricity I use. I expect the lights to turn on when I flip the switch and the coffeemaker to work each morning. Because electricity is so abundant, we don’t think much about it. Since many people have been spending more time at home the past year, energy consumption has increased. Yet everyone still expects an endless supply of power with uninterrupted service 24/7. The only time we really think about electricity is when the power goes out or perhaps when the bill arrives.

Given how electricity powers our modern lifestyle every day, it’s a great value—especially compared to other common services and expenses. Think back to the cost of a gallon of gasoline 20 years ago. Consider the cost of groceries or a cup of your favorite specialty coffee from a few years back. Unlike most other consumer goods, the cost of electricity has remained largely flat.

Like many of you, I have a smartphone to stay connected, and I subscribe to cable channels to enjoy more viewing options. Many of us consider these necessities for modern-day life. We can see what we’re getting for our money, and we pay the price for those services. In contrast, we don’t necessarily “see” all we get for our money when we use electricity.

But considering what electricity does for us, it’s a tremendous value for our quality of life as well as our budgets. Consider that the average rent increase was nearly 4% (from 2014 to 2019), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index. The cost of medical care increased 3% during this time, and education was not far behind at 2.6%. Where did electricity rank? According to the CPI, electricity increased by less than half a percentage point, 0.4%.

The bottom line: Electricity brings everyday value. We use electricity around the clock. I’m proud of our track record. We continually work to improve our operations to ensure a smarter grid and explore more renewable energy options where possible.

Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative provides the reliable service you expect and deserve as valued members of the co-op. As your trusted energy adviser, we want to help you save energy and money.

We’re here to help. If you have questions about your account or are looking for ways to save energy at home, please give us a call. Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative is your electric co-op. Our sole purpose is to serve you and the needs of our community. That’s everyday value.

Jimmy Black