Our broadband involvement
What is Alliant Energy doing to close the digital divide?
Alliant Energy is partnering with local Internet Service Providers (ISP), leveraging combined assets to benefit local communities. In other words, because the two entities use the same broadband transmission lines, they can combine forces. The ISP leases excess fiber-optic strands that Alliant Energy already has underground to deliver fast, reliable internet service to the rural community.
In the summer of 2022, Alliant Energy announced pilot projects with two Wisconsin-based ISPs.
- In August, the company announced partnership with Comelec Internet Services to bring fiber to the home internet service, with speeds up to 1 Gigabit, to nearly 550 households and businesses in the Village of Hazel Green. In our announcement, Tim Burbach, President of Comelec stated:
“Comelec is excited to join in partnership with Alliant Energy to provide fiber optic internet to homes and businesses in the Village of Hazel Green. We are also looking forward to future projects with Alliant Energy.”
- In June, the company announced its partnership with Mt. Horeb Telephone Company (MHTC) to bring high-speed internet service to the Village of Hollandale, a community located about 30 miles southwest of Madison. Construction began quickly, and by late September 2022, nearly 150 households and businesses could access internet service with a speed up to 2 gigabits per second.
To mark the beginning of construction, representatives from Alliant Energy, MHTC and Tri-State Directional Drilling, LLC along with the Hollandale Village Clerk-Treasurer met on-site to discuss the broadband project. Pictured (from L to R): Mark Whalen, Co-owner, Tri-State; Angela Olson, Senior Manager, MHTC; Kory Kolb, Co-owner, Tri-State; David de Leon, President of Alliant Energy's Wisconsin energy company; Patrick O’ Connor, Senior Strategic Project Manager, Alliant Energy; Griselda Aldrete, Director-Stakeholder Engagement, Alliant Energy; Sam Fletcher, Engineer II, Alliant Energy; Holly DeWitt, Clerk-Treasurer, Village of Hollandale; John Van Ooyen, CEO/GM, MHTC; Barbara Tormaschy, SVP Sustainability & Regulatory Strategy, Alliant Energy.
In addition, we are:
- Revitalizing our TechRefresh program and breathing new life into recycling computers and other technologies. In partnership with Cascade Asset Management and area businesses, the equipment is ‘refreshed’ and donated to non-profit groups, schools, libraries and a variety of local groups who are also focusing on addressing the digital access gap.
- Working with the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) to advocate for the passage of broadband bills recently introduced in Congress. These bills would increase funding opportunities for digital infrastructure.
- Investing in technology, including laying fiber, to enhance connections between electric facilities and devices in order to make the energy grid smarter, stronger, cleaner and more resilient, reliable and secure.
- Working alongside public utilities in several states to find ways to connect utility infrastructure to broadband providers to help those in need.
- Partnering with organizations and associations dedicated to advancing broadband by closing the digital divide.