By Karrie Carnes, Bonneville Power Administration
Public power utility communicators wear a lot of hats. From customer service and member relations to policy and event planning, chances are your role extends way beyond writing press releases and newsletters. Raise your hand if there aren’t enough hours in the day to create all the content you wish you could! Luckily we can help.
A few years ago, the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) heard from Northwest public power utilities that many of their members weren’t aware of the role hydropower plays in bringing renewable, carbon-free, and affordable energy to their communities. While those working in the energy sector or native to the Northwest know hydropower is the region’s largest power source, many recent transplants and younger generations don’t realize that their smartphones, laptops, and EVs are powered primarily by rivers.
What is Hydropower Flows Here?
Hydropower Flows Here is an education initiative created by BPA with input from Northwest utilities to increase public awareness of the value of hydropower. Through creative content, this outreach effort demonstrates how hydropower touches the lives of Northwest residents and highlights the benefits the resource provides. From infographics and social media posts to videos and web articles, each month Hydropower Flows Here provides accurate and engaging content for utility communicators to use.
For example, last year the Hydropower Flows Here team created an eight-piece Hydropower 101 web series. These public-friendly and easily digestible articles use plain language to explain concepts like reliability and renewable integration. They are available for use on websites, newsletters, and magazines.
Participation is optional. The educational content can be used when it resonates with a utility’s communications goals and tailored to each service territory.
New! Social Content at Your Fingertips
Every month new #HydroFlowsHere social media content is made available to utilities. To make it easy for Pioneer members to share these messages, a Hydropower Flows Here content library was created this month for Pioneer Social subscribers. If you use Pioneer Social to manage your social media channels, you can search and post BPA’s hydropower content directly from the Pioneer social media management platform.
This video shows how the new feature works:
Sharing the #HydroFlowsHere Message
Utilities have used Hydropower Flows Here educational material in a variety of ways, including banners, signs, coloring contests, parade floats, EV wraps, and Ruralite magazine content.
Some of the content focuses on the facts, like a carbon emissions comparison infographic. Other content, such as the hydropower-themed valentine cards or 12 Days of Hydropower social media series, takes a lighthearted approach to educating consumers about hydropower.
Want to Get Involved?
To be added to an email list announcing new educational content each month, email BPA. It’s that easy!