SOURCE: Choose Energy

Choose Energy

January 07, 2015 12:38 ET

What's Next for Pennsylvania After the Year of Green Energy?

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Jan 7, 2015) -

The following is a statement by John Tough, Vice President of Operations and Business Development at Choose Energy:

Renewably sourced electricity, particularly solar energy, is proving to be an important part of our future. In fact, 2014 was a banner year for renewable energy sources.

It's predicted that by the end of 2014, the U.S. will install an estimated 6.5 gigawatts (GW) of solar energy -- a 36 percent increase over 2013. Solar is the fastest growing source of renewable energy in America, accounting for a record 53 percent of all new electric generating capacity installed in the first half of 2014.

So how do customers, specifically those in Pennsylvania, fit into America's growing renewable energy landscape? Today, Pennsylvania ranks 9th in solar installations among the 50 states, as well as D.C. and Puerto Rico.

More than 1.3 million residential and commercial rooftops in the Pennsylvania could host solar panels, but not everyone in the state has solar-friendly rooftops. For example, residents with heavy tree coverage may find it difficult to go solar. For those who can't install solar, there are other options, such as choosing green energy plans.

According to the Choose Energy Pennsylvania Empowerment Report, 32 percent of households that use Choose Energy to shop for their energy plans select a green plan. That's a 39 percent increase from 2013 to 2014 in Pennsylvania households going green. So what's driving this newfound interest in green energy plans in Pennsylvania?

In addition to an increasingly green mindset and purchasing habits, rates for green energy plans in Pennsylvania are almost identical to standard electricity rates. This means that customers can go green and help the environment for less than an additional $2 a month.

Looking ahead, Pennsylvania has ambitious goals to increase renewable energy sources, which translates to more energy choices for customers. The state has required that 18 percent of its electricity come from renewable sources by 2021. At least 0.5 percent of that goal must come from solar power.

Standards set in Pennsylvania will impact neighboring states and have the potential to increase renewable energy options for customers in the Northeast. Pennsylvania is one of the top electricity-producing states in the nation, and helps supply the northeast region, making it important to the future of our nation's energy market.

John Tough is the vice president of operations and business development at Choose Energy, the nation's leading energy marketplace. For more information, visit

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