YCNGA is proud to have received awards for its environmental impact and marketing decisions.


LEED Silver Certification

Click here to learn more about
this prestigious award.

Silver Soar Award

Given by the APGA
(American Public Gas Association)

LEED Silver3



About the APGA and SOAR

 Formed in 1961, APGA has over 700 members in 36 states and is the only

not-for-profit trade organization that represents America's publicly owned natural gas local distribution companies (LDCs). APGA represents the interests of public gas before Congress, federal agencies and other energy-related stakeholders

by developing regulatory and legislative policies that further the goals of our members. In addition, APGA organizes meetings, seminars, and workshops

with a specific goal to improve the reliability, operational efficiency, and regulatory environment in which public gas systems operate. Through APGA membership, public gas systems are kept informed about new developments in technology, safety, public policy, operations, and the global markets that could affect the communities and consumers they serve. Our members are owned by,

and accountable to, the citizens they serve. APGA is the only trade

association that solely represents the interests of public natural gas

systems at the legislative and regulatory levels They include:

  • Municipal gas distribution systems

  • Public utility districts

  • County districts and public agencies having natural gas distribution facilities.

Click here to visit the APGA website and learn more.


APGA uses their System Operational Achievement Recognition (SOAR) to recognize natural gas distribution utilities that demonstrate commitment to excellence in four areas:


System Integrity 

 System integrity is defined as the state in which a natural gas distribution system is performing its overall intended function of distributing energy to all customers without being degraded or impaired by its internal

or external environment safely and effectively. Systems that exhibit excellence in system management have adopted policies and procedures for records management, emergency preparedness, regulatory compliance and system management.

System Improvement

 Natural gas distribution systems keep themselves well maintained through both

new technology integration and a commitment

to system improvement programs.

Distribution technology has changed significantly over the past 25 years with rapid advances in SCADA/telemetry, Geographic Information System (GIS) / digital mapping,

and Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) / Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

as well as new market opportunities like natural gas vehicles. Systems that exhibit excellence in system improvement involve supporting research and development of new technologies for operations and gas end-use, infrastructure modernization through capital improvement programs and targeted replacement of obsolete portions of the distribution system.


Employee Safety

 Employee injury prevention and employee safety education are core components

of a safety program that is utility-wide

and evident in all aspects of utility operations, including work performed by contractors. Systems that exhibit excellence in employee safety include adopting a safety program

that includes policies and procedures for education involvement and accountability

for all employees, as well as tracking

safety performance. 

Workforce Development 

 Creative recruitment, training, education,

and development practices provide a return

on investment through increased employee loyalty, motivation, safety and productivity.

Systems that exhibit excellence in workforce development emphasize continuing education, certification and training; encourage participation in outside organizations such 

as state, regional and national trade and professional associations; and have a

well thought out succession planning

and recruitment program. 

Applications are reviewed by a team of experts from the APGA Operations & Safety Committee

and are awarded a rating based on a total cumulative score of points achieved from the program criteria in each of these four areas. SOAR recognition continues for three years, at which point

the utility may apply again to maintain recognition.

Utilities can receive one of three SOAR recognition levels:

Bronze   80-89% of possible points

Silver    90-96% of possible points

Gold      97-100% of possible points