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Other Co-op Facts
America’s Cooperative Electric Utilities
The Nation’s Consumer-Owned Electric Utility Network
Electric cooperatives are an integral part of the $370 billion U.S. electric utility industry. They play a critical role in our nation’s economy and in local communities.
Electric Cooperatives Are:
- Private, independent, non-profit electric utilities
- Owned by the customers they serve
- Incorporated under the laws of the states in which they operate
- Established to provide at-cost electric service
- Governed by a board of directors elected from the membership which sets policies and procedures that are implemented by the co-op’s management
Distribution cooperatives are the foundation of the rural electric network. They deliver electricity to retail customers. Generation & transmission cooperatives (G&Ts) provide wholesale power to distribution co‑ops through their own generation or by purchasing power on behalf of the distribution members.
In addition to electric service, electric co-ops are deeply involved in their communities promoting development and revitalization projects, small businesses, job creation, improvement of water and sewer systems and assistance in delivery of health care and educational services.
Facts at a Glance
- 840 distribution and 65 G&T cooperatives, a total of 905 NRECA co-op members
- Serve an estimated 42 million people in 47 states
- 18.5 million businesses, homes, schools, churches, farms, irrigation systems and other establishments in 2,500 of 3,141 counties in the U.S.
- More than 12 percent of the nation’s meters are customers of rural electric co-ops