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United Purpose

Some topics we looked into while you were reading last month’s issue

The Texas Legislature convened for the first time 170 years ago, and the U.S. flag was raised at the Capitol in Austin as Texas transitioned to statehood. Electric cooperatives stand united, coming to the aid of fellow co-ops in times of emergency.

Star of a New Friendship

170 Years Ago: The lone star joined 27 others when the Republic of Texas flag was lowered and the U.S. flag raised in a ceremony at the Texas Capitol. On February 19, 1846, the young state’s Legislature convened for the first time, about a year after the U.S. Congress—with the support of President John Tyler—passed a bill to admit Texas as the 28th state.

Out-of-This-World Quote: Texas’ last president, Anson Jones, who is sometimes called the Architect of Annexation, addressed the crowd at the Austin ceremony. Near the end of his speech, he referenced the symbolic joining of the former nation’s flag with that of the U.S. “The Lone Star of Texas … has culminated, and, following an inscrutable destiny, has passed on and become fixed forever in that glorious constellation, which all freemen and lovers of freedom must reverence and adore—the American Union.”

Cooperative Principle No. 6: Cooperation Among Cooperatives

When a winter storm of historic impact is forecast for the Texas Panhandle, keeping the lights on takes a special kind of preparedness—and a special kind of follow-through. Co-ops follow the Seven Cooperative Principles, and the sixth principle is Cooperation Among Cooperatives.

When one co-op in North Texas experienced 1,700 downed utility poles in its service area, other co-ops were standing by to send in linemen and materials.

In this case, half a dozen co-ops responded to the call and were prepared to send resources, one from as far away as the Texas Gulf coast.

It’s never easy to forecast where the damaging weather will hit, but it’s always easy to know that the co-op family is ready to take care of its members.

By the Numbers: 10 Billion

February 18 is National Battery Day, which shines a light on the more than 10 billion batteries produced annually worldwide. As the popularity of mobile devices that rely on cutting-edge rechargeable cells continues to grow, batteries increasingly rely on the electric grid to keep cellphones, laptops and even cars humming along.

Plasmas Cost Plenty

Plasma TVs consume about twice as much power as LEDs—more than 1,400 kilowatt-hours each year, which can add up to $150 to your electricity bill, according to the Mother Nature Network.