More and more Pennsylvanians are shopping for the best deal on electricity, and surprisingly, in some areas the cheapest electricity on the market is a 100% wind power product. Last year, the Pittsburgh based non-profit organization Citizen Power joined up with TriEagle Energy to offer a 100% renewable wind power electricity plan to residential customers in the Duquesne Light service territory, which covers most of Allegheny and Beaver counties. Now, similar plans are being offered in the PECO and PPL service territories. Furthermore, Citizen Power has started signing up commercial account holders as well.
According to Executive Director Titus North, Citizen Power knew that wind power generation technology had developed to the point where it had become competitive in price, but saw that there were no low-priced wind alternatives available to consumers. Citizen Power has a long history of fighting on behalf of electricity consumers and the environment, and felt that it was well positioned to present a low-cost wind product to the public. TriEagle Energy agreed to create a product that would be 100% backed by certified wind RECs (renewable energy certificates) from Pennsylvania and neighboring states, and by utilizing Citizen Power’s marketing services, offered the lowest price for customers.
“Our mission is the promotion of renewable energy,” said North, “and we believe that this is the most effective way to do so.” North sees public concern about the environment on the rise due to nuclear crises, oil spills, fracking, and climate change. “People want to do something positive, but in this economy not many people can afford to purchase a hybrid car or put solar panels on their roof. However, this is something that helps the environment and saves consumers money at the same time.” Switching from default service can save consumers up to 26% off of the generation portion of their electric bills, depending on who is now their provider.
The local utility (Duquesne Light, PECO, or PPL) will continue to handle the billing and line maintenance for its customers who switch. Back in the 1990s when Pennsylvania deregulated electricity, it separated electricity generation from transmission and distribution. Regardless of which electricity company generates the electricity, the local utility provides the transmission and distribution. This means that switching generation companies will not affect reliability. “The lights won’t go out when the wind stops,” North said. “The only change people will notice will be a lower electricity bill.”
To sign up for TriEagle Energy’s Green Eagle wind product, visit LowCostWind.com and enroll in the Green Energy Collaborative, which is a program of Citizen Power. Membership is free, and members will then be able to sign up for the Green Eagle wind product.