MidAmerican Energy Company Powering Economic Growth
Wednesday, July 11, 2018
MidAmerican Energy Company has a local service center in Ottumwa and provides natural gas to area residents and businesses. But the company does a lot more than serve Ottumwa’s energy needs.
MidAmerican Energy is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Energy. It provides service to 770,000 electric customers and 751,000 natural gas customers in a 10,600-square mile area in Iowa, Illinois, South Dakota and Nebraska.
The utility is also working to fuel economic growth. Through MidAmerican Energy’s local partners program, it teams up with economic development groups in its service areas, providing professional assistance and resources.
“We help communities identify growth needs and work with them on strategic planning,” explains Debra Calvert, MidAmerican Energy’s business and community development manager.
When Ottumwa leaders realized several years ago they were running out of available properties, MidAmerican Energy was part of a consulting team that was put together by the Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation (OEDC) to identify properties for development.
The team also included Alliant Energy and the Ottumwa Public Works Department. Each brought pieces of information together to help the Helgerson Flats Industrial Center become a certified site.
The 82-acre parcel is scheduled to become certified by the Iowa Economic Development Authority by October 2018. Having a certified site is a boon for a region because it makes it much more competitive when it comes to attracting industry.
MidAmerican Energy assisted OEDC with an analysis that helped identify target industries such as warehousing, logistics and ag-based manufacturing for the site. It also helped with website funding and is planning to assist with site visits, either by meeting with site selectors in person or providing information for requests for proposals.
The company also works closely with existing Iowa businesses. Through its executive call program, it meets annually with business leaders to learn about their challenges and ensure companies are taking advantage of available resources and energy efficiency programs.
When Plastipak Packaging was looking at locating a plant in Ottumwa, MidAmerican Energy was there to help identify the company’s gas load and ensure there was adequate capacity and infrastructure in place.
The company is committed to becoming more sustainable and pledges to move beyond coal-fueled energy. Its investments in wind generation are helping it reach its goal to generate 100 percent of its electricity for Iowa customers from renewable sources.
In addition, MidAmerican Energy’s new commercial construction program helps customers design more energy-efficient buildings and offers them incentives for doing so.
Visit the company’s website to learn more.