Renewable Portfolio Standard

August 05, 2004


Pennsylvania’s December 1996 electricity restructuring law did not establish a renewable portfolio standard. However, as with the state’s public benefits funds for renewables, a renewable energy portfolio requirement was subsequently established through individual utility restructuring settlements with PECO, PP&L, GPU, and Allegheny (West Penn). In the case of PECO, for example, on January 1, 2001, 20% of PECO's residential customers were to be assigned to a provider of last resort-default supplier other than PECO via a competitive bidding process . To qualify for the "competitive default service" bidding process, an electric generation supplier had to agree to provide in 2001 at least 2.0% of its generation portfolio from renewable resources (See eligible technologies above). The renewable energy increment was to increase 0.5% annually thereafter. Other utility settlement agreements contained similar provisions, although GPU's portfolio requirement was only 0.2% renewables and municipal solid waste was an eligible fuel source. However, these agreements contained a clause that eliminated the requirement if the increase in cost as a result of using renewable energy exceeded a certain level. Only PECO's bid process was successful, with New Power picking up 299,000 customers and Green Mountain Power taking over about 50,000. New Power later went out of business and the number of Green Mountain Power's customers has dropped to about 32,000. Under the terms of the agreement with PECO, Green Mountain Energy's offer is between 1 and 2 percent less than the PECO price to compare, depending on the residential customer rate class.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Regulatory Policy
State: Pennsylvania
Incentive Type: Renewables Portfolio Standard
Web Site:
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Geothermal Electric
  • Solar Thermal Electric
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Biomass
  • Landfill Gas
  • Wind (Small)
Standard: PECO: 2% in 2001; increasing 0.5% annually; other utilities vary
Technology Minimum: No
Credit Trading/Tracking System: No


Name: Dan Griffiths
Organization: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Prot
Address: Rachel Carson State Office Building
Harrisburg PA 17105-2063
Phone: (717) 783-0542

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.