Arkansas Rural Internet Service (ARIS) with the support of Today’s Power was recognized by the Governor of Arkansas and the Arkansas Department of Environment Quality as the winners of the E2 award. The E2 award recognizes organizations that demonstrate outstanding leadership by implementing forward-thinking initiatives in the area of energy efficiency and resilience.
ARIS is the first partnership in the United States between an electric company, Ouachita Electric Cooperative, and a local telephone and internet provider, South Arkansas Telephone Company (SATCO). Together, the utilities are bringing high-speed internet to a rural, five-county area of South Arkansas that has been largely underserved. Through this collaboration, SATCO built a 3-acre, 120 kilowatt solar farm in partnership with Today’s Power, and OECC is providing its existing electric poles to run the fiber optic cable. ARIS expects to provide high speed Internet service to 4000 plus area residents by 2021.