See the full scale of PEC’s operations
Our mission is to provide low-cost, reliable power to our members and our focus is always on all of our members across the 8,100 square miles of the Texas Hill Country.
Although we serve more meters than any other U.S. electric distribution cooperative, we remain committed to providing first-class, personalized service to you. See below how PEC powers your home.
PEC is a nonprofit electric distribution cooperative, and our members are our owners.
Pedernales Electric Cooperative is more than an ordinary utility. We’re a cooperative, which means you, the member, are also an owner. And as an owner, you get to participate in the PEC board of directors’ elections and provide input on our operations. As a cooperative, we set our rates at the cost of service, which means we don’t earn a profit. Rather, any margins are reinvested to upgrade and maintain infrastructure to best serve you, or it is returned to you in the form of Capital Credits as the member-owner.
PEC is a distributor of electricity.
PEC does not generate electricity. To bring service to you, we purchase wholesale power from electric generators through the ERCOT market. Texas generators produce electricity from a variety of sources, including natural gas, hydro, wind, coal, solar, and more. The cost of all electricity generated and used by consumers is subject to ERCOT market conditions.
The Texas transmission grid is operated by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).
ERCOT is responsible for managing the flow of electric power to more than 26 million Texas customers, including the entire PEC service territory. Its jurisdiction covers more than 52,700 miles of transmission lines. ERCOT connects around 1,100 electric generators to Texas customers.
ERCOT will sometimes implement mandated controlled outages to protect your service.
When demand for electricity on the ERCOT grid is greater than the supply of generated electricity, all electric utilities in the ERCOT region may be required to lower demand on their systems. ERCOT will typically request consumers to conserve energy and will issue conservation alerts. As a last resort to help protect the reliability of the statewide electric grid, ERCOT may order controlled outages, also referred to as rotating outages, load shedding, or service interruptions.
PEC will not have knowledge of the length and duration of a controlled outage. If ERCOT orders controlled outages, all members should assume their power could be interrupted without advance notice. Efforts will be made as much as possible to provide advance notification of pending service interruptions. These include updates on pec.coop, social media, email, and text messages; however, notice may not be provided.
Power is delivered to your community from generators on the transmission system.
Transmission facilities include large poles and lines that carry high-voltage electricity from the generators to substations. We own more than 300 miles of transmission lines in our service territory. Across the state, there are thousands of miles of transmission lines owned and operated by other utilities that help bring power to our substations.
Transmission systems carry power to PEC substations in your community.
Those fenced or walled-in properties housing large electric equipment are substations, and they play an integral part in delivering your electricity. They take the high-voltage power created by generators and use a device called a transformer to lower the voltage so it can be safely distributed to you and the rest of the membership.
PEC operates over 75 substations across its vast service territory, with more on the way to serve continued growth.
PEC pays access fees to all the transmission service providers in ERCOT. Separately, PEC as an owner of transmission assets, receives revenue from all distribution service providers in ERCOT.
Distribution lines carry power from substations to our members.
All power going to our members flows through the PEC distribution system. PEC owns, builds, operates, and maintains the distribution to serve our membership.
Power lines leaving the substations carry 7,200-14,400-volt power to members’ homes and businesses, where a smaller transformer will lower the voltage once more before user consumption. We have more than 24,400 miles of distribution line — that’s close to the circumference of the earth! Over 70% of the PEC distribution lines are overhead, and over 20% are underground.
During power outages, our crews are ready to restore service.
PEC serves a big territory, which means we rely on numerous equipment to continue serving our members. We are proud of our reliability practices, and during an outage, we have crews standing by to restore power quickly and safely to members, no matter the time or weather. But lineworkers don’t just restore power during outages; with incredible year-over-year growth across our service area, updating and maintaining facilities is an everyday practice.
Operating an electric system is a sprawling and complicated job, made possible by the hard work and dedication of industry professionals. And while our goal is first and foremost to deliver safe, reliable electricity at a low cost to our members, PEC is not just part of the electric system — we’re part of the community too!
PEC knows that informed members make the best partners in helping maintain the reliability of our system. We appreciate you taking the time to learn more about your electricity.