The Cooperative Difference
Unlike investor-owned utilities, electric co-operatives are owned by those they serve. Electric cooperatives are non-profit, with any profits allocated to the members as capital credits, which are based on patronage and returned over time. Because they are locally owned, electric cooperatives are community-focused organizations that deliver safe, reliable and affordable energy to the consumer-members they serve.
While co-ops serve the fewest number of people, our electric lines cover more than 75 percent of the U.S. landmass. This is because we provide power where others once refused to go because of the low population density.
Electric co-ops consistently rank highest in member satisfaction among the three types of utilities: co-ops, investor-owned and municipal/publicly-owned. We believe this is because we serve consumer-members, not customers. We are neighbors serving neighbors.