CenterPoint Energy announces plans to continue enhancement of reliability, resiliency and safety of its electric infrastructure
2023-05-24T05:00:00Z

Evansville – May 24, 2023 – CenterPoint Energy Inc.'s (“CenterPoint Energy") Indiana-based electric business today announced plans to further enhance the reliability, resiliency and safety of its infrastructure, filing a five-year plan with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) to continue execution of the company's electric infrastructure improvement strategy.​

The proposed nearly $455 million plan, which will fund more than 300 projects, is the next phase of the modernization work originally approved by the IURC in 2017. Over the next five years, CenterPoint Energy plans to continue making strategic long-term infrastructure investments to maintain and enhance reliability and resiliency, manage life-cycle assets from aging equipment, and modernize the grid for customer benefit, while striving to safely deliver service.

“We are continuing our modernization and infrastructure investments to enhance the reliability and resiliency of our electric grid and allow for greater flexibility to meet the current and future energy needs of our customers," said Richard Leger, Senior Vice President, Indiana Electric. “Additionally, these investments will replace aging equipment, which is expected to reduce equipment malfunction, restoration costs and the number of outages our customers experience during both blue-sky days and extreme weather events."

During the first phase of the modernization program, CenterPoint Energy replaced and installed more than 220 miles of overhead conductors, 125 miles of underground conductors and 135 substation circuit breakers. Also, more than 2,600 transmission and 8,600 distribution structures were replaced or installed, and nearly 130 miles of transmission line were upgraded or installed.

The second phase of proposed enhancements will include:  

  • Overhead 12kV circuit rebuilds to replace aged conductors, poles, hardware and equipment to satisfy more robust construction standards and incorporate looping to improve reliability and allow for alternate feeds for re-energizing customers during extended outages.
  • Distribution automation to minimize the outage impact and duration and allow for evolving distribution technology to accommodate both electric vehicles and distributed energy resources.
  • Underground rebuilds to replace aging underground bare cable with a jacketed ​cable that meets current construction standards and incorporate looping technologies to improve grid resilience to provide alternate feeds for reenergizing customers during extended outages.
  • Wood pole replacement and treatment program to utilize inspection data of approximately 11,000 poles annually with the flexibility to address urgent and emergent situations as those are identified.
  • Substation rebuilds to replace aging infrastructure and reduce the risk of failure, including catastrophic failure through the replacement of transformers, breakers, relays, and communications equipment.
  • Transmission line rebuilds to incorporate the conversion from wood poles to steel poles and reconductoring to increase the line capacity to allow for additional load without creating a new transmission line footprint. Additional Optical Ground Wire (OPGW) installation to allow modernization of communication systems to enable future automation.
  • Physical security program to increase security to protect the company's most critical assets from increased physical threat of electric grid and substation attacks.

In this proposed plan, CenterPoint Energy is requesting recovery of the capital expenditures of investments made in 2024 through 2028. State law allows energy companies to prepare and submit infrastructure modernization plans with gradual cost recovery for which the IURC has ultimate approval rights and oversight authority. If the grid modernization plan is approved as is, the typical residential customer using 1000 kWh per month is expected to see an annual increase of approximately $3 per month on bills under the Transmission, Distribution, and Storage System Improvement Charge (TDSIC). No increase is expected until November 2024.

“As we look toward our customers' future energy needs, we understand affordability is important. We are continuously modeling and balancing bill impacts, while executing on these necessary reliability and resiliency infrastructure improvements," said Leger. “These projects will allow us to utilize ever evolving technologies, which is expected to result in enhanced reliability, fewer outages and improve restoration response for years to come."

Today's filing does not impact natural gas bills, nor is it related to CenterPoint Energy's recently announced Integrated Resource Plan preferred portfolio.
 
Forward Looking Statement

This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this news release, the words "anticipate," "believe," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "forecast," "goal," "intend," "may," "objective," "plan," "potential," "predict," "projection," "should," "target," "will" or other similar words are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual events and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Any statements in this news release regarding future events, such as approval of CenterPoint Energy's proposed plan, CenterPoint Energy's ability to executed on the proposed plan, including the proposed scope of projects and anticipated benefits,  the extent to which and timing of CenterPoint Energy's ability to recover costs to implement the proposed plan, the amount and expected impact to customer's bills, and any other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Each forward-looking statement contained in this news release speaks only as of the date of this release. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the provided forward-looking information include risks and uncertainties relating to: (1) the impact of pandemics, including the COVID-19 pandemic; (2) financial market conditions; (3) general economic conditions; (4) the timing and impact of future regulatory and legislative decisions; (5) effects of competition; (6) weather variations; (7) changes in business plans; (8) continued disruptions to the global supply chain and increases in commodity prices; (9) legislative decisions, including tax and developments related to the environment such as global climate change, air emissions, carbon and waste water discharges; (10) CenterPoint Energy's ability to execute on its initiatives, targets and goals and operations and maintenance goals and (11) other factors, risks and uncertainties discussed in CenterPoint Energy's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022, CenterPoint Energy's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2023 and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 

About CenterPoint Energy
As the only investor-owned electric and natural gas utility based in Texas, CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) is an energy delivery company with electric transmission and distribution, power generation and natural gas distribution operations that serve more than 7 million metered customers in Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Ohio and Texas. As of March 31, 2023, the company owned approximately $38 billion in assets. With approximately 9,000 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. For more information, visit CenterPointEnergy.com.


 Recent News

 

 

CenterPoint Energy has restored power to more than 98% of impacted customers, converges on localized outages in hardest-hit areas

Houston — July 17, 2024 – CenterPoint Energy today announced the crews have restored power to more than 98% of impacted customers, ahead of prior expectations. The company remains on track to restore electricity to all customers who can receive power by Friday, July 19.

“We want to thank first responders and local law enforcement for all of their support and partnership as our crews work around-the-clock to restore power for every last customer in the wake of Hurricane Beryl. More than 98% of impacted customers are now restored and we are directing our crews to get remaining customers who are without power back online as safely and quickly as possible," said Lynnae Wilson, Senior Vice President, Electric Business.

Wilson continued, “We are deeply grateful for the tireless efforts of our mutual assistance crews who dropped everything to help our communities when we needed them most. As we shift our focus from restoration to prevention, we will be calling on these additional vegetation management resources to execute accelerated plans to prune and remove trees and other vegetation to prepare for the rest of hurricane season."

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Supporting our communities

CenterPoint has continued to support the communities it serves throughout this challenging time and beyond. Since Hurricane Beryl made landfall, the CenterPoint Energy Foundation has contributed nearly $1.7 million to disaster relief organizations, including: United Way Relief Fund, Salvation Army, Houston Food Bank, Red Cross Coastal Bend, Red Cross Coastal Plains, and many others. Among other organizations, the CenterPoint Energy Foundation's contributions will support the Greater Houston Disaster Alliance, a joint effort of Greater Houston Community Foundation and United Way of Greater Houston, to help ensure that families with the most urgent need have support as they begin to work toward long-term recovery from Hurricane Beryl.

CenterPoint's electric customers are encouraged to enroll in Power Alert Service® to receive outage details and community-specific restoration updates as they become available. For information and updates, visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter and follow @CenterPoint for updates during inclement weather events.​​

CenterPoint Energy issues statement and provides restoration update

​​Houston — July 16, 2024 – CenterPoint Energy today announced that its crews have restored power to nearly 96% of impacted customers. The company remains on track to restore electricity to approximately 98% of impacted customers by the end of the day on Wednesday, July 17, and to all customers who can receive power by Friday, July 19. 

In addition, the company issued the following statement in response to Governor Abbott's letter:

We have work underway to address the Governor's requests and are committed to collaborating with the State, local government, regulators, and community leaders to increase the resiliency of the electric grid. This work is integral to ensuring that we are creating and sustaining an environment in Texas where people want to live and build their businesses.

How customers can support their restoration​

As CenterPoint moves into the later stages of the restoration process, customers without power should check their weatherhead, the point where power enters the home through an electric service drop, which is often a pipe located on the side of the residence or building. If the weatherhead is damaged, crews cannot safely restore service to the home until a licensed electrician has made the necessary repairs. Customers who are served by an underground service will not have a weatherhead, but there may still be damage to their equipment that could require servicing.

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Important safety reminders

  • Stay alert – ask to see a company identification badge before allowing a utility worker in your home.
  • Always stay at least 35 feet away from downed power lines and damaged electric utility equipment.
  • Treat all down and damaged equipment as energized and report it to the company at 713-207-2222 or 800-332-7143.
  • CenterPoint is currently experiencing longer than usual hold times across its region. The Customer Service team is only accepting calls for electric and natural gas emergencies at this time.
  • If using a portable generator, place in a well-ventilated area and never run it inside to avoid a dangerous build-up of carbon monoxide.
  • Crews are working to safely restore electric service for you and your family; please be cautious around restoration crews and give them plenty of room to safely assess damage and make repairs.

 
CenterPoint's electric customers are encouraged to enroll in Power Alert Service® to receive outage details and community-specific restoration updates as they become available. For information and updates, visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter and follow @CenterPoint for updates during inclement weather events.


CenterPoint Energy has now restored over 2 million impacted customers, expects to reach approximately 98% restoration by the end of day Wednesday, July 17

Houston — July 15, 2024 – CenterPoint Energy today announced that it has now restored power to over 2 million customers and expects to reach approximately 98% restoration by the end of the day on Wednesday, July 17.

The company is repositioning crews and equipment to address localized outages and areas with significant structural damage to restore electricity to those customers who still remain without power. The company is providing restoration dates to impacted customers and is working to restore customers sooner than expected.

“We are grateful to our customers for their patience as our crews have worked around-the-clock and in difficult conditions to get the lights and air conditioning back on for over 2 million impacted customers as safely and quickly as possible," said Lynnae Wilson, Senior Vice President, Electric Business. “We know the remaining customers are counting on us and are committed to restoring power to all remaining customers able to receive it. As we close in on the remaining outages, customers should ensure that there isn't damage to their weatherheads and are able to receive power."

In addition to damaging CenterPoint's electric infrastructure, severe weather may have caused damage to customer-owned equipment. Specifically, customers should check their weatherhead, the point where power enters the home through an electric service drop, which is often a pipe located on the side of the residence or building. If the weatherhead is damaged, crews cannot safely restore service to the home until a licensed electrician has made the necessary repairs. Customers who are served by an underground service will not have a weatherhead, but there may still be damage to their equipment that could require servicing.

Important safety reminders

  • Stay alert – ask to see a company identification badge before allowing a utility worker in your home.
  • You can always call CenterPoint and ask if an employee was authorized to visit your home.
  • Always stay at least 35 feet away from downed power lines and damaged electric utility equipment.
  • Treat all down and damaged equipment as energized and report it to the company at 713-207-2222 or 800-332-7143.
  • CenterPoint is currently experiencing longer than usual hold times across its region. The Customer Service team is only accepting calls for electric and natural gas emergencies at this time.
  • If using a portable generator, place in a well-ventilated area and never run it inside to avoid a dangerous build-up of carbon monoxide.
  • Crews are working to safely restore electric service for you and your family; please be cautious around restoration crews and give them plenty of room to safely assess damage and make repairs.

CenterPoint's electric customers are encouraged to enroll in Power Alert Service® to receive outage details and community-specific restoration updates as they become available. For information and updates, visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter and follow @CenterPoint for updates during inclement weather events.

CenterPoint Energy has restored power to 92% of impacted customers

​Houston — July 15, 2024 – CenterPoint Energy has now restored power to 92% of impacted customers and remains on track to restore electricity to approximately 98% of impacted customers by the end of day on Wednesday, July 17. The company now expects to restore power to all customers who can receive power by Friday, July 19.

“We are grateful to our crews who have restored power to our customers at a stronger pace than we have been able to in any hurricane in our history, despite the difficult conditions," Lynnae Wilson, Senior Vice President, Electric Business. “We continue to work around-the-clock to get our remaining customers back online."

In addition to damaging CenterPoint's electric infrastructure, Hurricane Beryl may have caused damage to customer-owned equipment. Specifically, customers should check their weatherhead, the point where power enters the home through an electric service drop, which is often a pipe located on the side of the residence or building. If the weatherhead is damaged, crews cannot safely restore service to the home until a licensed electrician has made the necessary repairs. Customers who are served by an underground service will not have a weatherhead, but there may still be damage to their equipment that could require servicing.

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Supporting Our Communities

CenterPoint has continued to support the communities it serves throughout this challenging time and beyond. Since Hurricane Beryl made landfall, the CenterPoint Energy Foundation has contributed nearly $1.7 million to disaster relief organizations, including: United Way Relief Fund, Salvation Army, Houston Food Bank, Red Cross Coastal Bend, Red Cross Coastal Plains, and many others. Through the contribution to Salvation Army, specifically, CenterPoint is enabling them to serve 83,000 meals to people in need. The company has also provided more than 90,000 bottles of water to cooling centers and other distribution centers throughout the greater Houston area and is continuing to deliver supplies to meet other immediate needs. CenterPoint has also continued to work hand-in-hand with community partners to position mobile generation at water treatment plants, medical facilities, water facilities, warming and cooling centers and senior living facilities throughout the Greater Houston area.

CenterPoint's electric customers are encouraged to enroll in Power Alert Service® to receive outage details and community-specific restoration updates as they become available. For information and updates, visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter and follow @CenterPoint for updates during inclement weather events.


CenterPoint Energy now expects to restore 90% of impacted customers by the end of the day Monday

​​​Houston — July 14, 2024 – CenterPoint Energy has now restored electricity to more than 1.8 million customers impacted by Hurricane Beryl. The company is tracking ahead of prior expectations to restore 85% by the end of the weekend and now expects to restore power to 90% of impacted customers by the end of day Monday.

Dedicated restoration crews have continued working night and day through the weekend, resulting in the fastest restoration in the company's history.  CenterPoint crews are converging on areas with significant structural damage as well as localized outages, deploying crews, equipment and mobile generation solutions to restore customers as safely and quickly as possible. At this time, the company has provided restoration dates to substantially all customers and is working to restore customers sooner than expected, wherever possible.

“Our crews are doing extraordinary work in neighborhoods across Greater Houston and have continued to accelerate restoration despite challenging conditions as thunderstorms rolled through Houston late yesterday," said Lynnae Wilson, Senior Vice President, Electric Business. “Looking ahead, we know those customers who are not yet restored are counting on us, and we are committed to working until we get their lights back on."

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Important safety reminders

  • Stay alert – ask to see a company identification badge before allowing a utility worker in your home.
  • Always stay at least 35 feet away from downed power lines and damaged electric utility equipment.
  • Treat all down and damaged equipment as energized and report it to the company at 713-207-2222 or 800-332-7143.
  • CenterPoint is currently experiencing longer than usual hold times across its region. The Customer Service team is only accepting calls for electric and natural gas emergencies at this time.
  • If using a portable generator, place in a well-ventilated area and never run it inside to avoid a dangerous build-up of carbon monoxide.
  • Crews are working to safely restore electric service for you and your family; please be cautious around restoration crews and give them plenty of room to safely assess damage and make repairs.

 
CenterPoint's electric customers are encouraged to enroll in Power Alert Service® to receive outage details and community-specific restoration updates as they become available. For information and updates, visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter and follow @CenterPoint for updates during inclement weather events.​