How It Works: BPU’s Electric Service

BPU is proud to be part of your community, providing power to thousands of homes and businesses throughout our service territory. But do you know how we actually produce electricity? In this short video, you’ll learn about both renewable and non-renewable sources of energy, along with a few of the facilities we use to generate electricity. We’ll also walk you through the clean coal energy process to show the steps we use to generate the electricity that powers your life.

emPower - Energy BPU's Electric Service

[Narrator] It may not take a lot of energy to flip a switch,

An image of a light switch appears.

[Narrator] but it takes a lot of energy to power a community.

A picture of the Kansas Speedway appears.

[Narrator] So where does that energy come from? Good question.

An aerial view of the Procter and Gamble Kansas City Plant followed by the view of the front.

[Narrator] All the energy that powers the world comes from two types of resources.

A split view of hydroelectric power and coal power appears.

[Narrator] Renewable and non-renewable. Renewable energy is unlimited, and comes from natural and environmentally friendly processes.

A list of renewable energy resources appears: Solar, hydropower, geothermal, biomass, landfill gas, and wind.

[Narrator] But, renewable energy alone cannot produce enough consistent energy to power our community. That's why we use non-renewable energy sources as well.

A list of non-renewable energy resources appears: clean coal, nuclear, natural gas, and oil, appears next to the renewable list.

[Narrator] They're dependable, and do not rely on the weather, but they're less environmentally friendly, and won't last forever.

Images of a wind turbine and coal furnace appear.

[Narrator] BPU, your community's utility company, uses a combination of both renewable and non-renewable energies to power everything

An image of the Children's Campus of Kansas City scrolls past.

[Narrator] that requires electricity. Your home, businesses, hospitals, traffic lights,

Images of a row homes, a GM plant, a traffic light, and a view of Kansas City fill the corners of the screen.

[Narrator] and a whole lot more.

Photos appear in sequence of Bowersock Mills in Lawrence, KS, Smoky Hills Wind Power in Salina, KS, Dogwood Energy in Pleasant Hill, MO and Nearman in Kansas City, KS.

[Narrator] But, how are these energies converted into electricity and distributed to our community? Let's take a closer look at the clean coal process.

A clip of a technician installing a panel, followed by a view of the coal plant and then a clip of coal moving on a conveyor belt to a furnace.

[Narrator] At BPU's Nearman Power Plant, coal is brought into the plant on conveyor belts, then burned in a boiler, converting its chemical energy into thermal energy.

A clip of pipes followed by a temperature gauge and a clip of a wind turbine.

[Narrator] This heat converts water into steam, which expands in pipes, creating pressure. The steam's released over the blades of a turbine, causing it to spin, converting the thermal energy into mechanical energy. The spinning turbine is connected to a generator, converting the mechanical energy into electrical energy.

Two men work in front of a large generator. It is much taller than both of them.

[Narrator] Finally, a transformer transmits the electrical energy through power lines and distributes it throughout our community.

The camera pans over the outside view of the power plant, including the power lines and transformers.

[Narrator] BPU uses a clean coal process, which filters the exhaust, and recycles remaining ash, to help protect our environment. This process, along with the energies BPU converts from water, wind, landfill gasses, and natural gasses, shows you all the work that goes into bringing you reliable,

Images of different types of power plants flash across the screen.

[Narrator] environmentally friendly power with just a flip of the switch.

A hand flips a light switch and the screen goes black.

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