BGE’s STRIDE plan is designed to enhance the modernization of BGE’s energy distribution system in order to enhance system safety and reliability for customers. This program was introduced in 2013 with a focus on replacing outmoded gas materials such as cast iron and uncoated steel pipes with modern, durable equipment. As a result of this program more than 150 miles of gas pipeline across Maryland have been replaced in the first two STRIDE plan years.
Utilities across the state are now planning to bring this program to the electric side. Once approved, the program will allow for a stronger, more reliable and modern electric grid sooner. STRIDE will allow the replacement of obsolete electric infrastructure, the inclusion of innovative new technologies and stronger smarter security systems to better protect equipment and information.We encourage you to learn more about the STRIDE program and what it means for our customers.
STRIDE provides a framework for the Public Service Commission (PSC) to authorize utility plans to upgrade the electric system with the assurance of near real-time cost recovery and enables greater focused enhancements of the natural gas system replacement program. The PSC retains its full existing authority to accept, modify or reject any infrastructure investment plan developed by a utility. If approved, a STRIDE plan is funded by a monthly charge that is capped by law for customers. When utilities recover investments as the work is performed, more utility capital dollars can be efficiently invested in infrastructure enhancements, and utilities can deliver improved service to customers.
The use of a surcharge mechanism for more real-time, prompt cost recovery is not creating a new or additive cost to customers. All of the investments provided for under the current gas STRIDE law and those under House Bill 546 are investments the utilities will make, and subject to Commission prudency and reasonableness standards, will be recovered from customers. The only change is timing of when the costs are paid. STRIDES’s pay-as-you-go method provides more gradual payments and a strong credit rating, which can help reduce finance costs over the long term. Those savings are passed onto you, our customer.
STRIDE-related projects provides for a more automated and stronger grid to include enhanced facilitation of integration of distributed generation resources, like wind and solar facilities. Electric distribution utilities are also evaluating how to integrate energy storage and battery technology as it becomes more viable in the future.
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