A pair of headlines in Indiana applies to the whole nation.

  • “Indiana’s climate is changing. Temperatures are rising, more precipitation is falling and the last spring frost of the year has been getting steadily earlier.” (Source)
  • “Duke Energy files plan in Indiana to raise rates and improve power grid,” says a local TV station.

There is no free lunch in energy. Utility Duke Energy must spend money to make the grid in Indiana more dependable and able to withstand a tougher future.

“Duke Energy said it hopes to ‘harden’ the electric grid to better withstand the effects of weather. Measures to strengthen the grid include upgrading wood utility poles to steel ones, modernizing substations, and moving some lines underground in outage-prone areas.” (Source)

The Indiana plan, if approved by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, will raise customer rates about 1% a year from 2024 to 2029, with a 6% increase by the final year, says the Kokomo Tribune.

The Purdue climate report says, “Indiana will continue to warm, more precipitation will fall, and extremely hot days will be common in many parts of the state. These changing climate patterns affect us individually and affect many aspects of our society, including human health, public infrastructure, water resources, agriculture, energy use, urban environments, and ecosystems.” (My italics and bold type)

So, good news about Indiana for looking ahead, planning, and possibly investing in their future. As Indiana officials debate the issue in the utility regulatory commission, we remind them: Do you want to have a cheap energy system? Then remember that Texas opted for the cheapest alternative and sacrificed reliability. Last February dangerous, costly – and deadly – consequences were the results.

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Feature image is of crews hardening a grid from wood to metal poles.