Our commitment to the environment goes beyond regulatory compliance. Our Environmental Affairs team takes a proactive approach to advancing the culture and continual improvement of environmental practices and sustainability throughout the organization.
More information related to our environmental commitment is available in the Safety and Operations section of our annual Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Report
MGE’s Environmental and Sustainability Policy
As your community energy company, MGE recognizes its responsibility to preserve and protect the environment while serving our communities with safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy. We are proactive and forward-thinking in our stewardship and promote sustainability with our partners, suppliers and employees as we work together to build a cleaner, smarter future.
In pursuit of our mission and in support of our commitment to those we serve, MGE:
- Complies with all environmental laws, regulations, permit requirements and other corporate environmental commitments and exceeds compliance as demonstrated by the commitments in this policy.
- Seeks environment-friendly options and waste minimization when considering sources of supply, material and contractors.
- Considers the environmental impacts of applicable company activities and seeks sustainable, cost-effective ways to reduce adverse environmental impacts and risk.
- Sets corporate goals and objectives and fosters a culture of continuous improvement in environmental and employee safety performance.
- Educates employees about MGE’s environmental responsibilities and policy and communicates and reinforces environmental values throughout the company.
- Provides regular updates on environmental and sustainability initiatives and performance to MGE’s Board of Directors to advance oversight and transparency of company operations.
- Explores opportunities to advance new, cost-effective technologies for the benefit of all and to reduce the community’s collective environmental footprint.
- Partners with community stakeholders to promote environmental education, energy efficiency and conservation.
- Communicates openly and honestly with the public regarding MGE’s environmental policy and performance.
- Contributes to the well-being of its communities through charitable and corporate giving and the service and volunteerism of employees.
Sustainability Steering Team
MGE’s employee-led Sustainability Steering Team reviews, evaluates and prioritizes continuous improvement opportunities for day-to-day operations companywide. The group is responsible for commissioning continuous improvement teams to take on specific improvement initiatives and tasks.
Environmental Management System
In 2017, MGE expanded the scope of our renewed five-year contract with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for Green Tier certification, which recognizes environmental leadership. Our primary goal in the expanded contract is to cover all MGE operations under our Environmental Management System (EMS).
An EMS is a continuous improvement process that evaluates, prioritizes and manages environmental risks. MGE previously used an EMS at our Blount Generating Station. The expanded scope of our EMS captures environmental improvements across the company and further demonstrates our commitment to goal-setting and environmental accountability.
Comprehensive Risk Minimization
MGE’s environmental team oversees hundreds of routine monitoring, recordkeeping and reporting tasks, some of which occur every week. In the past, these were tracked on multiple different servers to manage the data and deadlines as the tasks were assigned to and tracked for employees across several departments.
In 2019, MGE began using a new comprehensive Environmental Management Information System (EMIS). The EMIS makes it significantly easier to see and track the different tasks. For example, inspections in the field are now done and saved electronically, which means the data can be retrieved instantly.
The EMIS provides MGE with better and quicker access to the status of compliance activities and improved information for resource planning. It also improves our reporting performance. This leads to more efficient use of time, better alignment of information management processes and simplified training for turnover or responsibility transfers.
MGE voluntarily participates in two statewide environmental performance programs. MGE has achieved the highest designations from both programs. In 2020, MGE:
- Earned the Green Master designation for the seventh consecutive year from the Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council. The voluntary statewide benchmarking program evaluates participants in nine key areasrelated to sustainability. Only the top 20 percent of applying companies receive the Green Master designation. MGE was the first utility to be awarded the distinction in 2014.
- Continued efforts to expand the scope of our renewed five-year contract with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for its Green Tier certification. MGE was the first electric utility to take part in the pilot program and remains the only electric utility to be certified at the highest level of Green Tier. Our primary goal in the expanded contract is to cover all MGE operations under our Environmental Management System (EMS).
MGE also participates in the Electric Power Research Institute’s (EPRI) efforts to identify and understand metrics appropriate for benchmarking the performance of electric power companies on their priority sustainability issues. MGE has participated in this EPRI benchmarking since it began in 2014.