Columbus Electric Cooperative, Inc.

Columbus Currents

Partnership among Tri-State G&T, Columbus Electric, TurningPoint Energy and Investors Will Serve Electric Cooperatives across Four States.

Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, Inc., a wholesale power supplier owned by 44 member electric cooperatives, (including Columbus Electric) and D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments, L.L.C. (DESRI), announced the execution of a 25-year contract to supply the utility with renewable energy from the planned Alta Luna Solar Project to be constructed in Luna County in southwest New Mexico.

Tri-State will purchase the entire output of the 25-megawatt(MW) solar farm over the life of the contract. The facility is expected to come online in December 2016 and will receive electric service from Columbus Electric, a Tri-State member system serving approximately 3,000 members and over 6,800 meters from its headquarters in Deming, N.M.

Chris Martinez, Executive Vice President & General Manager of Columbus Electric Cooperative, noted that the project is a point of pride for southwest New Mexico. "The addition of Alta Luna Solar allows cooperative member-owners to harness a vital New Mexico resource -the sun- for generating affordable, renewable power for the communities in this part of the state. We are pleased to be contributing to this important initiative."

The Alta Luna Solar Project is expected to consist of a single-axis tracking array of over 108,000 photovoltaic solar panels located on a 220-acre site in Luna County, approximately 25 miles northeast of Deming. The project was developed by TurningPoint Energy, a Denver-based energy developer, and subsequently sold to an affiliate of DESRI in partnership with Bright Plain Renewable Energy, LLC, a San Francisco based solar project developer, investor and operator. "Alta Luna Solar was a very complex solar project that came together due to innovation, collaboration and leadership of our collective team, including Tri-State, Columbus Electric, Luna County, Bright Plain Renewable Energy, D.E. Shaw and my codevelopment partners at Solar Prime," said Jared Schoch, principal and founder of TurningPoint Energy. "I want to especially highlight Luna County, which is a collaborative, pro-business, pro-renewable energy generation county."

"We are pleased to be working with Tri-State and our other valued partners to provide renewable energy services to the residents of New Mexico," said Bryan Martin, a managing director and head of U.S. Private Equity for the D. E. Shaw group. "By transforming the state's vast solar resources into a clean, reliable source of energy, Alta Luna Solar is an important step as we build a bright and sustainable future together."

The Alta Luna Solar Project is Tri-State's second utility-scale solar photovoltaic power purchase agreement in New Mexico and the third in its system overall; in 2010 the utility began receiving power from the 30-MW Cimarron Solar facility located in Colfax County, N.M., and last month Tri-State announced an agreement to purchase power from the 30-MW San Isabel Solar Project to be constructed in southern Colorado. In 2014, 24 percent of the energy Tri-State and its member systems delivered to cooperative members was generated from renewable resources - one of the top ratios among electric utilities nationwide.

Preparing for Power Outages

Severe weather is the leading cause of power outages not just here at Columbus Electric but across the United States. Outages caused by severe weather such as thunderstorms, wind storms or localized microburst (sudden, powerful, localized downdraft air current), account for the majority of outages of extended duration. While you can rest assured we are working on restoring power, it sometimes takes time depending on the extent of the damage.

This picture was taken west of Deming 10-7-2015

Following are just are few ideas for being prepared.

If a storm is coming that may bring power outages and you have a water supply (such as a well-water pump system) that could be affected by a power outage, fill your bathtub and spare containers with water. Water in the bathtub should be used for sanitation purposes only, not as drinking water. Pouring a pail of water from the tub directly into the bowl can flush a toilet.

Set your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings (remember to reset them back to normal once power is restored). During an outage, do not open the refrigerator or freezer door. Food can stay cold in a full refrigerator for up to 24 hours, and in a well-packedfreezer for 48 hours (24 hours if it is half-packed).

If you have medication that requires refrigeration, check with your pharmacist for guidance on proper storage during an extended outage.

If you use medical equipment in your home that requires electricity, talk to your health care provider about how you can prepare for its use during a power outage. Ensure you have extra batteries for medical equipment and assistive devices.

If you have life-support devices (home dialysis, suction, breathing machines, etc.) that depend on electricity, please notify us in advance of an emergency. We will put you on a "priority reconnection service" list. Talk to your equipment suppliers about your power options and also let the fire department know that you are dependent on life-support devices.

Tip of the Month

Remember to close your fireplace damper (unless a fire is burning). Keeping the damper open is like leaving a window wide open during the winter, allowing warm air to escape through the chimney.






Electrical Outage Telephone Numbers

575-546-8838 between the hours of 8:00am - 5:00 pm

After Hours and Holidays 1-800-228-0579

Reporting an Outage details ...