Investments in storm hardening, grid resiliency and energy generation among key customer benefits in rate adjustment request

July 1, 2024

Ameren Missouri files request with state regulators to adjust rates next summer

ST. LOUIS, July 1, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- On June 28, Ameren Missouri filed with the Missouri Public Service Commission (PSC) a request to adjust its electric base rates next summer. The new rates would take effect in mid-2025 to recover the costs of major electric system upgrades as well as cleaner electricity generation investments to ensure the system remains reliable and resilient for customers. 

"The grid and generation upgrades we are making as part of Ameren Missouri's Smart Energy Plan are improving customer reliability," said Mark Birk, chairman and president of Ameren Missouri, a subsidiary of Ameren Corporation (NYSE: AEE). "We've experienced several severe storms across our service territory over the last year and a half, and the system has performed well. Our storm hardening and smart technology efforts have saved nearly 91,000 customer outages and 36 million outage minutes from January 2023 through the end of May 2024."

Over the next 11 months, the filing will be carefully reviewed by the PSC and other stakeholders. If the request is approved by regulators, the rate adjustment in mid-2025 would cost an average residential electric customer with 1,011 kilowatt-hours of usage about $17 a month. Today, residential rates for Ameren Missouri customers are approximately 28% below Midwest and national averages, according to the Edison Electric Institute Typical Bills and Average Rates Report through June 30, 2023. Ameren Missouri rates will remain well below these averages even if this request is approved. 

Key components of the rate adjustment request include:

  • Strengthening the grid and investing in smart technology through Ameren Missouri's Smart Energy Plan to ensure reliable energy for our customers.
    • Replacing aging infrastructure with newer, upgraded power lines with increased capacity supporting resiliency and providing flexibility to reroute power during an outage while crews safely make repairs.
    • Adding new and upgraded substations with smart technology that can more rapidly detect and isolate damage, speeding power restoration.
    • Upgrading utility poles, many fortified with stronger composite materials, that can better withstand severe weather and winds up to 70 mph.
  • Maintaining a diverse generation portfolio of reliable, low-cost on-demand energy. As energy demand and extreme weather threats increase, it is more important than ever to maintain the availability of our energy centers to meet the needs of our customers.

  • Providing cleaner energy to the communities we serve through the installation of three new solar energy centers set to be in service at the end of 2024. Combined, they can produce the energy necessary to power approximately 93,000 homes annually. We are also partnering with nonprofits and others by installing solar canopies in parking lots across the region through the Neighborhood Solar program.

  • Offering an enhanced customer experience through rate options that provide customers with more convenience, choice and control over their electric usage. Customer benefits include personalized usage information and various rate options to choose from that specifically meet a customer's lifestyle. Smart meters also enable faster connection when moving or starting service.

A slide presentation with additional details regarding Ameren Missouri's rate review adjustment request is available at AmerenInvestors.com. Customers can also visit AmerenMissouri.com/InvestingInMissouri for more information about the filing.

"We are committed to ensuring the system is reliable for all our customers while keeping costs as low as possible. As a result of the investments we have made, our customers are seeing fewer outages with shorter durations, delivering up to a 40% improvement in reliability on circuits with innovative technology and associated grid upgrades," said Warren Wood, vice president of regulatory and legislative affairs at Ameren Missouri. "These investments, combined with our new renewable energy centers, help ensure we have a reliable and resilient system to serve customers today and into the future."

As the communities we serve manage current economic conditions, Ameren Missouri has made even more energy assistance available. The company offers flexible payment options and connects customers with government and community assistance funding programs through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Customers can view what options are available to them at AmerenMissouri.com/EnergyAssistance.

"We recognize the impact of electric rate adjustments and are working to keep rates as low as possible while maintaining high levels of reliability. We also want our customers to know we're here to help," Birk said. "Any customers in need of assistance should contact us today for information regarding access to energy assistance grants with expanded eligibility requirements and to arrange flexible payment options. We also have energy efficiency programs and energy management tools to make it easier for customers to manage their energy use."

About Ameren Missouri
Ameren Missouri has been providing electric and gas service for more than 100 years, and the company's electric rates are among the lowest in the nation. Ameren Missouri's mission is to power the quality of life for its 1.2 million electric and 135,000 natural gas customers in central and eastern Missouri. The company's service area covers 64 counties and more than 500 communities, including the greater St. Louis area. For more information, visit Ameren.com/Missouri or follow us at @AmerenMissouri or Facebook.com/AmerenMissouri.

 

Cision View original content:https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/investments-in-storm-hardening-grid-resiliency-and-energy-generation-among-key-customer-benefits-in-rate-adjustment-request-302186837.html

SOURCE Ameren Missouri