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MBEF Update Winter ’21

Greetings MBEF members:

Wow! Last year and so far in 2021, Missouri and the rest of the country face challenges we haven’t seen in generations.

First, the COVID 19 pandemic is in its twelfth month of existence here bringing with it frustration, devastation, and desperation. On the bright side, over 10% of the state is vaccinated, kids are mostly in school, restaurants are opening, and finally, the numbers are heading in the right direction. Hopefully, by summertime, we as a will country take some big swings to eradicate the virus from our shores.

In the meantime, if you or a loved one need information or help during these troubling times, please go to the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services website where you can find information relating to the COVID-19 vaccine and all other health guidelines. Be smart, be safe.

Now if the pandemic wasn’t enough, currently, Missouri is facing one of the harshest and longest stretches of foul weather this winter. A two week period of below freezing temperatures combined with ice and snow is bearing down on us as we speak. Conditions like these put a significant strain on our power grid. Families and businesses are using more power to combat the cold and to do so our electric and gas service providers are asked to generate more power than normal, which is harder to do because it is so cold outside! Neighboring states face the same challenges, which creates shortages for the region’s overall power supply.

As a result, some parts of the Missouri are facing rolling blackouts for short periods of time so that our utilities can conserve energy now to make sure the power supply can serve the region’s needs as the cold stretch continues. Every little bit counts, which is why the Missouri Public Service Commission offers these tips to combat the cold. Sealing up drafty windows and lowering your thermostat by a degree or two are small steps that can go a long way to protect our grid.

Speaking of the grid, it is times like these to reflect on the passage of Senate Bill 564, which was signed into law a few years ago. The legislation allows Missouri utility companies to accelerate their efforts to build a smarter, more durable grid, protecting our state’s power supply from cyber threats and weather events like the one we are currently experiencing.

Until the next time, please stay warm, be safe, and look after your friends, family, neighbors, and pets!

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