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Northern States Power Essay, Research Paper
A leader in today’s economic world, Northern States
Power (NSP) is recognized for its outstanding performance
in both regulated and nonregulated operations. Its regulated
operation serves over two million electric and gas
customers in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South
Dakota, Arizona, and Michigan (NSP – Investor’s
Overview 1). Its head offices are located in Minneapolis,
Minnesota, and the Chairman, President and Chief
Executive Officer (CEO) is Mr. James J. Howard III
(Howard 1). Its Viking Gas Transmission Company
Subsidiary owns and operates a 500-mile natural gas
pipeline (NSP – Investor’s Overview 1). Northern States
Power is one of the nation’s leading energy companies with
competitive rates, responsive service, and dependable and
reliable energy. A relationship with NSP began’s when they
sign up for services with them; moreover, when you choose
to live in a certain area. Some of the facts about NSP are
services/people, profit, rates, and sources of power,
standings, first aid/safety, Y2K, merger, and about how
they help within the community. In North Dakota, NSP
provides service to more than 80,000 electric customers
and 30,000 gas customers in Fargo, Grand Forks, Minot,
and many surrounding communities (NSP – Northern
Dakota 1). They have served in these communities for over
80 years (Northern States Power Energy Wise 2). "By
powering the world, NSP brings energy to (Howard 6):" ?
The international markets where we do business ? The
communities close to home where we contribute time and
money ? To customers, who have ever-increasing energy
needs and choices ? To employees, who make the energy
work ? And finally, to you?the shareholders?who have
placed trust in them The 24th straight year in a row to mark
growth for NSP was 1998. Northern States Power’s
common stocks are traded on three different exchanges:
New York Stock, Chicago Stock, and Pacific Stock. Its
ticker tape symbol is NSP. Newspaper stock tables list
NSP Company as NoStPw, NoStPwr, or NSPw (NSP -
Investor’s Overview’s 2). Northern States Power and its
subsidiaries reported earning of $52.3 million or 34 cents a
share, for the first quarter of 1999. Operating revenue for
the quarter was up 6 percent to $743.2 million. Warmer
weather, increased maintenance, and Y2K computer work
is the cause of the decreased earning (NSP First-quarter).
"Advantages to being a registered shareholder are (NSP -
Investor’s overview 2):" ? Dividend checks are sent directly
to you, deposited in the back account you designate, or
maybe reinvested in the company as you choose ? You
may purchase additional stock (through dividend
reinvestment and optional investment plans) with little or no
fees ? You may deposit your share certificates with the
company for safekeeping if you sign up for the Dividend
Reinvestment Program ? Shareholder company mailings
will be sent directly to your address "Electricity is an
extremely price-volatile commodity. The price of on-peak
electricity on 15 April 1998 ranged from $20 per
megawatt-hour to $38 per megawatt-hour. Competitive
prices serve us well today. But becomes an even greater
advantage in a competitive market (Howard 3)." In trying
to compare different electrical Service Companies, I talked
with my Uncle, Edward Schiele, from Karlsruhe, North
Dakota. I asked him what his monthly electric bill averages
and he said it is between $100 to $115 a month during the
winter months. Verendrye Electric Cooperative out of
Velva, North Dakota, services Karlsruhe with its electrical
needs. Karlsruhe is a rural community of around 150-200
people (Schiele, Edward). Our families electrical service
needs are serviced by NSP. My Mother, Virginia Schiele,
said our last electrical bill was only $41.49. That is a big
difference from my uncle’s bill. Additionally, my mother told
me that when we lived in Holiday Village Trailer Court we
were serviced by Verendrye Electric and the bill averaged
around $80 a month in the winter (Schiele, Virginia).
Across North Dakota they’re many different electrical
companies. Electricity from other utility companies can cost
up to 63 percent more than from Northern States Power.
In checking nine different companies, they ranged from
$72.50 a month with Cass County Electric to Northern
States Power at $49.68. Northern States Power has the
lowest electric rates for Northern Dakota customers. If
you’re looking for the best value, it definitely is Northern
States Power (Northern States Power Energy Wise 2).
There is always a challenge on energy pricing. In recent
years, many businesses have explored co-generation. That
is harnessing energy from the excess heat produced in
manufacturing (Brauer 2). Northern States Power is
investing in renewable sources of power. It is studying the
use of solar, wind, and biomass energy sources and how
they fit into our energizes future needs (Northern States
Power Company ? Home 2). During the 7th Century, the
ancient Persians were believed to have built the first
windmill. The earlier windmills use driving pumps or
grindstones to produce power. Today’s windmills use
blades and were once a common sight on American farms
(NSP ? Renew Wind 1). Wind turbines, the modern
counterpart of windmills, drive electric generators. A
turbine, installed on top of a tower, has three blades with a
rotor diameter of 160 feet. Towers average 100 to 175
feet tall (NSP ? Renew Wind 1). A turbine operates under
the same principal as an airplane wings. Lift is the force that
pulls the blades coveting the linear motion into rotational
motion that drives an electric generator. It takes 67 to 200
wind turbines to generate 100 megawatts of electricity
(NSP ? Renew Wind 2). As with all sources of generation,
NSP seeks to minimize the advantage and minimize the
disadvantages. They choose companies who can provide
the latest, most cost-effective technology and select sites
identified through extensive research as the windiest area.
Additionally, sites are chosen in close proximity to
transmission lines (NSP ? Renew Wind 2). Using solar
power goes back to 1839 when French scientist Edmond
Becquerel first discovered on that on certain material light
could create an electric charge. However, nothing became
of it until the 1960s when the United States space program
began the use of silicon-based photovoltaic cells to power
some satellite applications (NSP ? Solar 1). Usually made
of silicon, solar photovoltaic panels contain cells that
convert sunlight directly into electricity. These systems can
operate independently or be connected to utility electrical
grids already in use. Conducting research since 1982, the
use of grid-connected photovoltaics systems are what
interests NSP (NSP ? Solar 2). Biomass is the use of any
organic material that can be used as fuel. Examples include
agriculture, crops, trees, grasses, seed hulls, animal waste,
landfill gas, and wood wastes from forests, orchards, mills,
and construction. People have used these products to heat
homes for thousands of years. Today, some use biomass in
combination with other fuels to generate electricity (NSP ?
Biomass 1). Northern States Power uses wood waste to
produce electricity at one plant and at another it uses
landfill methane gas. However, extreme care must be taken
to use biomass in an environmentally responsible way
(NSP ? Biomass 1). Northern States Power has strong
traditional values for the protection for the environment.
They believe in protecting the delicate balance between the
need for reliable energy and minimizing the impact for
energy production and distribution. Among the utility
companies, NSP is a leader in a variety of initiatives to
preserve our natural resources, use renewable energy
sources, and minimize it’s impact on the environment (NSP
? Environmental 1). How does North and South Dakota
stand in items rates by NSP, lets take a look. All states
serviced by NSP had zero lost workdays in January 1999
and five lost workdays were noted in June 1998, the
Dakota’s showing none. The Dakota’s have zero incidents
noted in January 1999 for safety; but in June 1998 they had
two on the records. Other states reported a total of 56 lost
days up till June 1998 and six in January 1999 (Delivery 1).
For Projects Completed-on-Time, the Dakota’s have no
rating. All other states have a completion rate of 93
percent, the goal is 80 percent. To me, this shows NSP is
dedicated to quality service to their customers (Delivery 1).
Projects cost commissions are hard to estimate or rate; but,
to show you expenditures here are a few shockers.
Remember that all projected costs are in the millions. Fargo
shows $83, Grand Forks shows $102, Minot shows $87,
and Sioux Falls shows $79. Actual costs were $87 million
(Delivery 1). Northern States Power has budgeted $24
million for checking its equipment to make sure there are no
problems when the year 2000 arrives. Dealing with
electrical outages daily, NSP expects only a minimal
disruption of service to its customers (NSP ? First-quarter
B6). They have already confirmed the readiness of 70
percent of the equipment and systems. With 80 percent of
its systems pre-dating computers, there systems can be
operated manually. In one case, a sensing device was
placed into a millennium changeover, all it took was an
extra 1.5 of a second to operate, a time that will not impair
the system functions (NSP ? News Release 1 & 2).
Weather at home or work, standard first aid knowledge
and safety training is a must. No one knows the time or day
someone or even themselves may be hurt or become ill and
need helps (Missouri ii). Individuals working with electrical
lines encounter many situations that can cause injury if not
property though out and safety principles applied. First aid
is one of those subjects you must know, but hope that you
will never have to use (Missouri ii). On one such incident,
by brother, James Horsfall, was the first individual to
response. He had only been working as an Apprentice
Lineman for NSP for about one year when the accident
occurred. They were taken down and replacing an
overhead electrical line around Edina Prairie School when
the accident occurred. They had all the proper safety
guards up and an OSHA Safety Inspector was on the job
with them (Horsfall). Everything was going along fine until
kids on bikes started going in and around the orange safety
cones. A little later, a vehicle drove around the orange
cones and over the wires on the ground. When the vehicle
went over the wires, this caused them to go fling. One wire
clipped by brother in the back caves of his legs and he
went down (he was wearing knee high lineman boots). The
OSHA Safety Inspector was also caught off guard and was
clipped in the front of his legs just below the knees and
another wire chipped him in the back, just below his
shoulders (Horsfall). Ensuring his safety first, James
crawled to the safety inspector. He noted a massive bleed
to the head and immediately applied direct pressure to the
wound. He than instructed the gentleman not to move and
called for additional help (Horsfall). The OSHA Inspector
had minor abrasions and lacerations with a severe head
injury and was hospitalizes for two to three weeks. James
was commended for his fast action to assure the safety and
lesson the injury. The vehicles driver was cited for her
failure to observe the safety precautions in this incident.
Northern States Power’s action after this incident was to
place safety cones only five feet apart (Horsfall). Northern
States Power goes international when they entered into a
definitive merger agreement with the Denver, Colorado,
based New Century Energies (NSP – New Release 1).
The two utilities companies plan to create the nation’s
third-largest utility company servicing well over three million
customers in the Untied Sates and two million customers
internationally. The new yet to be named company will
stretch from the Canadian border to Mexico with a strong
global presence in the Untied Kingdom, Central Europe,
Australia, and South America (Padley 1). The merger is
expected to result in a net savings over the next 10 year of
over $1.1 billion. Additionally, it is expected to be a
tax-free, stock-for-stock exchange for shareholders of
both companies. This merger prepares the new company
for where the industry is going and not where it is today
which is important to customers of the future (NSP – New
Release 3). Working with retirees and their families, NSP
works to improve the quality of life in our communities.
They support local and national initiatives and provide
direct support for any involvement with schools, students,
and community-based organizations (NSP ? Community 1
& 2). "Northern States Power support’s a wide variety of
community based programs (NSP ? Community 1 & 2):" ?
Education Partnerships ? Event Support ? Energy
Education K-12 ? Calendar Contest K-6 ? Nonprofit
Board Participation ? Power Plant Tours ? Speakers
Bureau ? Volunteerism The majority of these programs are
based in the Minneapolis and St Paul, Minnesota, area; but
you can contact any NSP office to see what services are
available in your area. You can also request additional
information at firstname.lastname@example.org (NSP ? Community
1). To sum things up, it has been said NSP is the energy to
make things happen. In doing the math, I found that looking
at the services/people, sources of power, rates, profits,
Y2K, community involvement, and merger information that
you can’t go wrong in choosing NSP if you live in there
serving area. Northern States Power is the best value four
your money?any money does not go as far as it use to.
Customers who get there electrical and gas needs from
NSP or anyone of their subsidiaries are truly the winners in
today’s world and getting their monies worth.
Brauer, David. "NSP’s Grass-Roots Political Strategy."
Corporate Report ? Minnesota, Mar 94, Vol. 25, Issue 3,
P40, 1p Deliver System Construction & Field Operations.
Monthly Performance Update. January 1999 Howard,
James J. III. "1998 Shareholders Annual Meeting." Online.
Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 22 March 1999. Available:
Missouri Valley Line Constructors Apprenticeship. "First
Aid." September 1993 NSP – Biomass. Online. Microsoft
Explorer. Internet. 25 March 1999. Available:
http://www.nspco.com/renewables/biomass.htm NSP ?
Community Involvement. Online. Microsoft Explorer.
Internet. 22 March 1999. Available:
cominv.htm NSP – Environmental Initiaitives. Online.
Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 22 March 1999. Available:
http://www.nspco.com/environ.htm NSP First-quarter
Earning Cut. Minot Daily News 16 April 1999: B6 NSP -
News Release. Online. Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 25
March 1999. Available
http://nspco.com/nsp/nwsrel/nwsrel98/123098.htm NSP -
News Release. Online. Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 26
March 1999. Available
http://nspco.com/nsp/nwsrel/032599nr.htm NSP – North
Dakota. Online. Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 22 March
1999. Available http://www.nspco.com/nsp/nd.htm NSP ?
Renew Wind. Online. Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 25
March 1999. Available:
http://www.nspco.com/renewables/wind.htm NSP – Solar.
Online. Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 25 March 1999.
Northern States Power Investor’s Overview. Online.
Microsoft Explorer. Internet. 22 March 1999. Available:
http://www.corporate-ir.net/ ireye/ ir_site.zhtml?
ticker=nsp&script= 2100&layout=7 Northern States
Power Energy Wise (Publication for NSP Customers)
Spring 1999 Northern States Power Company ? Home
Page. Online. Microscoft Explorer. Internet. 22 March
1999. Available: http://www.nspco.com/ Padley, Karen.
"NSP, Denver Utility to Merge." Saint Paul Pioneer Press,
Minnesota. 25 March 1999. Northern States Power is one
of the nation’s leading energy companies with competitive
rates, responsive service, and dependable and reliable
energy. Introduction I. Services/People A. ND Customer’s
B. Responsible II. Profit A. Growth B. Exchanges C.
Benefits to Shareholders III Rates A. Prices B.
Comparisons C. Bottom Line IV Sources of Power A.
Wind B. Solar C. Biomass D. Environmental V Standings
A. Lost Work Days B. Safety Incident’s C. Projects
On-Time VI Y2K A. Budget C. Completed VI First Aid /
Safety A. Time B. Knowledge C. Incident D. Outcome
VIII Merger A. Reliable X Community A. Programs
Supported B. Contact Conclusion
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