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The aim of this paper is to add a new principle in power system operation: the economic use of equipment. Economic use of equipment guides system operation, so that the cost of equipment wear is considered during the minimization of overall system running cost. To achieve this, a mathematical description of the connection between wear and use of equipment is needed. In this work, a methodology of expressing wear of cables as a function of their operating point is presented. A cost is attached to the wear of each cable system, which is augmented to the overall system running cost. The interconnected network of the Ionian Islands in Greece is used as a study case, which demonstrates the impact of the wear cost of cables during economic dispatch.