Board Member Spotlight: Kathryn Kunert, Vice President, Economic Connections and Integration MidAmerican Energy
15 Nov 2019
MidAmerican Energy – Proudly and Safely Serving your Energy Needs
Kathryn Kunert, Vice President, Economic Connections and Integration, MidAmerican Energy
At MidAmerican Energy, “obsessively, relentlessly at your service” is more than just a tagline -- it truly defines who we are as a company. We are proud to serve the greater Ft. Dodge community with affordable and increasingly renewable electric and natural gas service. But that’s not all.
Being obsessively, relentlessly at your service also means investing in our energy infrastructure so we can provide safe and reliable service to our customers each and every day. That’s why we have a companywide initiative, called Safety Through Asset Reliability, or STAR, to ensure we maintain and update our electric and natural gas delivery systems.
STAR begins with strategic planning. Our teams analyze and invest in MidAmerican Energy systems and equipment to deliver the energy you need, whenever you need it, and to ensure our systems run safely, reliably and cost-effectively. Throughout the year, we inspect and maintain our electric and natural gas distribution systems so they deliver energy that’s always there and always safe.
MidAmerican Energy serves 783,000 electric customers in Iowa, Illinois and South Dakota. We oversee more than 29,000 miles of power lines, over 700,000 utility poles, as well as circuits, connections and control systems to keep everything on for our customers. Recently, we added hundreds of smart sensors to electric lines, which helps us restore service more quickly if an outage occurs. The small electronic sensors, called remote fault indicators, attach to power lines. The devices instantly transmit precise outage and location details to MidAmerican Energy control room operators if the sensors detect a service interruption.
Throughout the year, we inspect and proactively replace utility poles throughout our service territory. That’s in addition to replacing poles damaged by vehicle crashes, weather events or other circumstances.
To serve our 765,000 natural gas customers in Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska and South Dakota, we safely operate 13,420 miles of natural gas systems, including 12,720 miles of natural gas distribution lines and equipment. Natural gas is the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels that powers industries and heats more than half of all American homes. North America has a natural gas delivery system that includes nearly two million miles of natural gas transmission pipeline. This system has an outstanding safety record. It is operated and maintained in accordance with strict federal and state regulatory requirements.
While most natural gas lines are underground and out of sight, they’re not out of mind at MidAmerican Energy. We’ve spent decades evaluating our natural gas delivery system infrastructure and strategically investing in upgrades, which is what we continue to do today. These upgrades help ensure safe and reliable natural gas service anytime you need it. As technology advances, we are continually replacing legacy equipment that measures and controls natural gas flow and pressure, including regulator stations and gas meters, as well as equipment that delivers the familiar rotten egg smell to odorless natural gas, to enhance safety.
While we invest in our electric and natural gas systems to ensure safety and reliability, outages can occur when weather conditions or other circumstances are present. Customers can sign up for text or email outage alerts, before winter hits. Log in to or create a My Account at MidAmericanEnergy.com to get signed up!
Keeping customers safe and informed are top priorities. At MidAmerican Energy, we take that commitment seriously and look forward to proudly and safely serving the greater Ft. Dodge area for decades to come.