Sustainability stories

Leading the way on electrification

By 2030, 100 percent of our active light-duty fleet vehicles will be electric. We strive to advance electrification initiatives by embracing technology that enhances our purpose-driven strategy to serve customers and build stronger communities.

As an industry leader in electrification, we recently announced we joined the Ameren-led coalition to expand electric vehicle (EV) charging across the Midwest. This first-of-its-kind collaboration among Midwest energy companies is committed in good faith to building a large, collaborative network of EV charging stations. We’re proud to keep the momentum going and do our part to further extend the network.

As of September 2021, there are two million EVs on U.S. roads. This number is expected to increase to 18.7 million by 2030. To meet the demand, an estimated 9.6 million public EV charging stations will be needed, but only about 100,000 stations are in service today. With an expanded charging network, EV drivers will be able to travel from Wisconsin to Texas, and many routes in between, with plenty of locations to recharge along the way.

“We understand the critical need for more charging stations available at convenient locations,” said David de Leon, president of Alliant Energy's Wisconsin energy company. “By signing on to this collaboration, we can help increase the EV infrastructure necessary to assure customers that they will be able to charge up no matter where they are driving. In the long-run our customers and the communities we serve all benefit from a cleaner energy future.”

Hope on wheels in Fond du Lac

A special new vehicle recently hit the streets in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin with the help of Alliant Energy. We helped purchase a brand-new truck for the Salvation Army to use to pick up and deliver donations. We were also honored to help design the truck’s graphics, which emphasize words like help, love, compassion and hope. The words appear in English, Spanish and Hmong to represent the three most common languages spoken in Wisconsin.

The Salvation Army uses the truck six days a week. On any given day, it could be used to:

  • Deliver furniture to a family who was previously homeless.
  • Pick up food donations from a local grocery store to distribute at the Salvation Army food pantry.
  • Transport clothing donations.

The Alliant Energy Foundation worked closely with Salvation Army’s Connie Millard to plan the gift.

“I hope when people see this truck on the road, it makes them smile,” Connie said. We couldn’t agree more!

Salvation Army Truck POP UP video

Higher voltage standards enhance sustainability

We are successfully transitioning our electric distribution system by standardizing lines to a higher voltage level of 25 kilovolts (kV). By implementing this design standard, our system will require fewer substations, occupy less land, and incur reduced maintenance costs. This will also make our system more resilient and reliable by supporting quicker outage restoration through an increase in feeder ties and capacity. It will also support two-way flows of electricity enabling more growth of distributed renewable resources.

Modernizing our electric system will make it more robust and flexible in serving our customers as well as provide for a lower overall life cycle cost making it more sustainable. For example, we are upgrading our system to 25 kV in Perry, IA which will reduce the number of substations needed from 6 to 1, while also supporting future growth of clean energy in this community.

Alliant Energy sustainability efforts win state award

Alliant Energy was honored with the Iowa Recycling Association's (IRA) Best Waste Diversion Program award. The award was presented in Cedar Rapids at the annual Iowa Recycling and Solid Waste Management Conference on October 5, 2021.

Cedar Rapids Linn County Solid Waste Agency nominated Alliant Energy as a result of their utility pole waste reduction efforts following the derecho in August 2020.

The large volumes of debris from that storm, including building structures, shingles and roofing material, put landfill airspace at a premium. Damaged utility poles posed a large, bulky problem.

The Solid Waste Agency partnered with Alliant Energy in a pilot program to divert reusable utility poles. There was great interest from Linn County’s agricultural community to reuse the poles to rebuild their farms. Most of the poles were used for fence repairs.

This public-private partnership preserved airspace in the landfill by diverting 133,800 pounds of poles and can be used as a model for future storm events.

Sunny outlook for three new Customer Hosted Renewables sites

We recently reached partnership agreements with Kohler Co. in Kohler, Wisconsin, the city of Perry, Iowa and Iowa County, Wisconsin to install customer-hosted solar projects. Through our Customer-Hosted Renewables program, we lease space from businesses and communities to host solar farms. Participants turn unused space into income, demonstrate green leadership in their communities and meet sustainability goals with Renewable Energy Credits.

The clean energy generated by these projects will flow to local electric grids and help power nearby homes and businesses for years to come.

Keeping customers cozy despite cold conditions

In February 2021, there was record cold weather in our service area and much of the country. Despite the frigid weather, we continued to meet our customers’ energy needs to ensure safe, reliable service for the duration of the cold conditions and beyond.

To make sure our customers have power when they need it most, we use a diverse energy mix, and regularly repair and maintain our generation resources and electric and gas distribution systems. We engineer our wind, solar and other energy-generating assets to perform well in cold and hot temperatures. Plans and detailed checklists ensure that all assets perform as expected. Every season, we do our best to anticipate and prepare for challenges, no matter the weather.

Solar with a community focus

In December 2020, we launched our first-ever community solar project in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Our community solar program allows our customers to benefit from solar power without the need to install solar panels on their property.

“As a homeowner, I considered putting solar PV on my rooftop − it’s a significant investment,” says Fond du Lac resident and Alliant Energy employee Kathy Leifer.

Community solar is both a convenient and cost-effective way for our customers to support the transition to cleaner energy. These projects also align with our sustainability goals to eliminate all coal from our electric generation fleet by 2040 and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

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How Community Solar works for you

Transforming how we work for our customers

Because people are at the heart of everything we do, we constantly look for ways to transform and improve our customers’ experience. Ideas to create better, more cost-effective solutions often come from those who know our business and our customers best — Alliant Energy employees. From offering mobile solutions to reducing paperwork, we commit to provide the best possible experience as we light the way forward for everyone we serve.

Iowa wind reaches 1,000 MW milestone

In fall 2020, we completed our plan to add 1,000 megawatts (MW) of wind production in Iowa, several months ahead of schedule and within budget. We achieved this goal when we finished our 130-MW Richland Wind Farm in Sac County, located in west-central Iowa. Two of our wind farms earned Envision® Platinum ratings and we followed Envision guidelines for others that we built.

Our Iowa energy company now owns and operates more than 1,300 megawatts of wind. This investment in wind energy for Iowa customers generates significant financial benefits through tax revenue for communities and lease payments to landowners. Our company overall owns and operates nearly 1,800 megawatts of wind, making Alliant Energy the third-largest owner-operator of regulated wind in the United States. Learn more about our wind development.

Better security, faster response and better clean energy integration

We will soon complete a fiber telecommunications network to transmit and handle increasing amounts of customer energy-related data. Sensors, smart meters, fault interrupters and other digital devices transform how customers receive, use and generate energy.

When our fiber telecommunications network is complete, we expect it to make our systems more resilient by delivering:

  • Better grid management – stronger connections between digital grid devices.
  • Better security – greater resistance to hackers or sabotage.
  • Better integration of alternative energy – smoother integration of distributed energy generation.
  • Better information integrity – faster, safer and more secure data transmission.
  • Better cost-effectiveness – safeguards against future fiber lease price increases.
  • Better efficiency – requires less energy to operate.
  • Better reliability – more durable lasting far longer than traditional wire.
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Decorah battery pilot project

Wisconsin pilot program assists financially-disadvantaged customers

The COVID-19 pandemic increased the number of our customers who struggle to make ends meet.

Our Customer Service team developed the Wisconsin Arrears Management Program pilot. The program is designed to help financially-disadvantaged customers pay down their past-due balance and keep their current bills up to date. This innovative program helps customers who need it the most and delivers on our broader responsibility to our customers and communities.

Local solar projects support county and city governments

Our local solar investments put renewable energy to work for customers where they live and helps build stronger communities. In November 2020, we announced a partnership with Dane County, Wisconsin, to build a 16.5-megawatt solar project. This collaboration supports an increased renewable portfolio for our company and provides more clean energy to customers. In lieu of payment for the leased land, the county will receive renewable energy credits to offset its electricity use.

In January 2021, Alliant Energy and the city of Sheboygan approved a lease agreement to install a one-megawatt solar facility in the Sheboygan Business Center. The project is part of our Customer Hosted Renewables Program. It will provide Sheboygan with lease payments for the next 25 years.

Customer Service team goes the extra mile to reach out to customers

2020 was a tough year for many customers who experienced financial hardship. Our Customer Service team helped customers get their energy bills back on track. A new payment arrangement plan was created to allow customers to set their own terms. The team called customers with past-due balances to help them find payment arrangement and energy assistance options.

New local utility assistance programs were also announced during the pandemic. Families who hadn’t experienced financial hardship before needed to understand their options. Our customers were able to benefit from over $2 million dollars of energy assistance donated by our company to our Hometown Care Energy Fund.
This content may contain forward-looking statements.