Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

For Immediate Release


Addie Kauzlarich

202-872-2680 (media hotline)

Pepco Customers Experience Improved Service Reliability in 2021

Washington, DC (Feb. 21, 2022) — Pepco customers across the District of Columbia and Maryland are continuing to experience improvements in the reliability of their energy service, a result of the company's ongoing work to modernize and upgrade the local energy grid against increasingly severe weather.

  • For the second year in a row, Pepco's Maryland customers experienced the lowest frequency of electric outages ever. Even when service was interrupted, crews safely restored service in 94 minutes, on average, across the company's Maryland service area.
  • Pepco's customers in the District experienced the second lowest frequency of electric outages ever in 2021, just shy of the record set in 2020. Even when service was interrupted, crews were able to safely restore service in 116 minutes, on average.

Over the past ten years, ongoing investments in the local energy grid have driven a 69 percent decrease in the frequency of electric outages Pepco customers have experienced.

As severe weather events become more frequent due to climate change, more renewable energy such as solar comes on the grid, and more people begin to drive electric vehicles, utilities, like Pepco, must continue to invest in the grid to help ensure customers continue to enjoy reliable energy service and to attract businesses, investment and clean energy jobs to the region.

"We are committed more than ever to providing the best possible service for our customers," said Tamla Olivier, senior vice president & COO of Pepco Holdings. "This continued improvement in our reliability performance is a testament to the ongoing work and dedication of our employees year-over-year to provide our customers safe and reliable energy service. We will continue modernizing the energy grid across our entire service area through strategic infrastructure upgrades that will help harden the system against severe weather and will further the development and interconnection of clean energy resources."

Each day, Pepco performs work across the District and Maryland as part of the company's ongoing efforts to further improve reliability for customers. This work includes inspecting existing infrastructure, trimming trees that could impact the system, building new substations and new underground equipment, strengthening transmission and distribution lines, and installing stronger, tree-resistant aerial cable. Pepco also installs innovative technologies to improve system reliability, such as specialized equipment, like smart switches and reclosers, that can automatically detect issues and restore service faster by automatically isolating damage. These technologies have been a major driver in the continued reduction in outages for customers.

In August 2021, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report that outlined the widespread, rapid and intensifying impacts of the climate crisis due to fossil-fuel emissions. The report called out the need for the electric grid to be more resilient because it is often the last line of defense for residents and businesses.

Pepco continues to invest in projects and initiatives to reinforce and modernize the local energy grid, while providing customers with the information they need to make informed choices on their energy use. In 2021, the company performed work on several projects to further improve service reliability. These projects include:

  • Capital Grid – The Capital Grid project is a 10-year strategy to strengthen the resiliency and reliability of the District's energy grid by modernizing aging infrastructure while creating a smarter energy system. The upgraded grid will support the city's continued growth, accommodate more customer-generated power and have built-in technologies that help the District meet its clean energy goals.
  • DC PLUG – The District of Columbia Power Line Undergrounding (DC PLUG) initiative is a multi-year program focused on the underground placement of the most vulnerable distribution power lines. The DC PLUG initiative improves resiliency and reliability in the face of increasingly severe storms. The Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia recently approved a joint application by Pepco and the D.C. Department of Transportation (DDOT) to begin the final phase of the DC PLUG program and work will continue to place vulnerable overhead power lines underground.
  • Benning Area Reliability Plan – The Benning Area Reliability Plan is a coordinated effort to improve the reliability of service in the community by upgrading equipment such as utility poles and overhead lines and adding new technology to the system. Pepco also added new feeders to the system, which will increase capacity to meet the area's growing demand for electricity.
  • Sligo to Linden Project – The Sligo to Linden Project installed three new 69 kilovolt underground lines between the Sligo and Linden substations to increase area reliability.

In 2022, Pepco is continuing work on numerous other major projects as part of the company's ongoing efforts to modernize the local energy grid. For more information on additional reliability enhancement projects across D.C. and Maryland, visit


© Potomac Electric Power Company, 2023. All Rights Reserved.