Pennsylvania is one of the top three electricity-generating states in the nation, along with Texas and Florida. The state regularly produces more electricity than it consumes, making it a leading supplier of East Coast electricity. In 2016, 38.8% of the electricity produced in Pennsylvania came from nuclear power. The only state that produces more nuclear energy than Pennsylvania is Illinois. The second largest source of electricity in Pennsylvania is natural gas, comprising 31.8% of 2016 electricity production. Coal is the third major source of Pennsylvania electricity, coming in at 25.5% of total production.
In November 2004, Pennsylvania enacted an Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS), which requires all Pennsylvania electricity suppliers to use a minimum percentage of alternative sources. Pennsylvania utilities have responded by investing in several types of renewable energy sources, but especially wind power. Pennsylvania has nearly doubled its wind power generation over the past 5 years. Over the same period, electricity production from coal has decreased about 46%.
Pennsylvania Electricity Prices
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average retail price of electricity for Pennsylvania residents in December 2016 was 13.76¢ per kWh, a whole 1.55¢ above the average U.S. electricity price of 12.21¢ per kWh.
Pennsylvania Energy Mix
Net Electricity Generation By Source:
Source: Energy Information Administration, 2016
Pennsylvania’s electricity production from coal has fallen almost 46% since 2011. Over the same time period, wind power production has increased about 93%. That’s a lot of wind turbines!
Pennsylvania Energy Sector Employment
According to the Clean Jobs Pennsylvania report, renewable energy employed more than 13,000 Pennsylvanians in 2014. PECO Energy Company is the largest electric utility in Pennsylvania, with over 9,600 employees. Some other large energy employers in Pennsylvania are PPL Electric Utilities Corporation, Duquesne Light Company, and FirstEnergy. According to the Solar Energy Information Administration (SEIA), Pennsylvania is home to over 483 solar companies, employing more than 3,000 Pennsylvanians.
Fun fact: more Americans are employed by renewable energy than coal, oil, and gas combined, despite wind and solar energy only making up 5% of the total U.S. energy mix. According to a study from the University of California, Berkeley, solar energy creates over 7 times more jobs than coal or oil per MWh produced. The employment estimates for wind power differ from source to source, but most agree that it also produces more jobs than fossil fuels.
Pennsylvania Utility Companies
The largest utility companies in Pennsylvania are PECO Energy Company, PPL Electric Utilities Corporation, and Duquesne Light Company. Previously in Pennsylvania, one utility company controlled the entire flow of electricity, from production to distribution. However, the Pennsylvania energy market has since been “deregulated,” meaning that some elements of the service, such as electricity prices, can be set by other companies. This gives Pennsylvania businesses and homeowners the power to choose their electricity supplier.
Your local utility is still responsible for distributing electricity to every home in your area. In return, they send you a monthly bill, which you must pay to keep the electricity flowing. By default, they also produce or purchase your electricity. However, Pennsylvania’s deregulated energy market allows you to switch electricity suppliers to take advantage of lower electricity prices.
Many solar and wind farms have been built in Pennsylvania by utility companies. The Alleghany Ridge wind farm is the largest in the state, with a maximum production capacity of 80 MW. There are also several large retailers in Pennsylvania investing in renewable energy, including IKEA, Crayola, Staples, Walmart, Kohl’s, and Snyder’s.
PECO Energy Company
- Subsidiary of Exelon Corporation
- Serves approximately 1.6 million electric customers
- Headquartered in Philadelphia
- Incorporated in 1902
PPL Electric Utilities
- Serves approximately 1.4 million customers
- Headquartered in Allentown, PA
- Founded in 1920
West Penn Power
- Subsidiary of FirstEnergy/ Alleghany Energy
- Founded in 1916
- Serves approximately 720,000 customers
Arcadia Power’s Pennsylvania Renewable Energy Services
With Arcadia Power’s clean energy offerings, homeowners and renters across the state can now sign up to reduce their impact, be more energy efficient, and save on their energy bills while keeping their same utility company. Here are three programs currently available to Pennsylvania residents:
As a Pennsylvania utility customer, you can reduce your impact by matching your home’s electricity usage with renewable energy certificates from wind farms. You can sign up for our 50% Wind Energy plan for free, and begin service with your next utility bill. All you need is your local utility login to link up with Arcadia’s platform and start supporting wind farms each month at no extra cost to you.
We offer a community solar-savings program to homeowners and renters in Pennsylvania. No matter where you live, you can subscribe to community solar projects across the country and start saving on your utility bill each month. There aren’t any installations, site visits, or equipment necessary, and if you move, your savings will even move with you.
Zero-down Energy Efficient Products
Our pay-as-you-save energy program enables Pennsylvania utility customers to access energy efficient products for $0 down. We will offer LED light bulbs, Wiser Air Smart Thermostats, and other home energy products to help you be more efficient and save on your utility bills. As an Arcadia customer, you can simply pay for your efficient products over time using the energy savings you’ll start seeing each month.