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Since Pennsylvania electric deregulation began in 1996, businesses have the power to choose their specific electricity provider or to continue to purchase from their utility company. For businesses of all sizes in Pittsburgh, the deregulated market allows business owners to compare energy plans from top energy suppliers and shop for the lowest electricity rates.
In 1994 the Public Utilities Commission began investigating the energy market and published their findings in "The Report and Recommendation on Electric Competition". Their research convinced the state assembly to pass the Electricity Generation Customer Choice and Competition Act in 1996. Over the next 15 years, Pennsylvania removed market rate caps by region gradually forming a free market.
Utilities are the entities in charge of the operation and maintenance of the energy infrastructure, like wires and towers. The local utility in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is Penn Power, Penelec, Duquesne Light Company, PPL Electric Utilities, West Penn Power, and Met-Ed]. Each utility is responsible for transporting electricity from the generators to residential homes and businesses in Pittsburgh.
Energy providers in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, like Direct Energy, Entrust, and Public Power, are the competitive energy retailers. Each energy provider buys energy from the wholesale market (the generators) and then re-sells it to consumers (homeowners, renters, and businesses).
In most cases, the consumer (the homeowner, renter, or business) signs a contract with an energy provider for a specific energy plan. The basic energy plan details the rate class, the energy rate per kWh, the contract term length (6, 12, 24, 36 months), and other contract terms like the cancellation fee policy.
Three rivers – the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio – come together to create the unique location for one of America’s most livable cities, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Known as "the Steel City" for its more than 300 steel-related businesses, the Pittsburgh metro area is the 26th largest in the U.S.
Pittsburgh faced economical trouble decades between 1970 and 1990 when steel production went through a significant downturn. Reflecting its local pride, the city re-invented itself as a hub for multiple new industries and now Pittsburgh is a leading industry complex for manufacturing, shipbuilding, petroleum, foods, sports, transportation, computing, autos, and electronics. Today, eight Fortune 500 companies and over 1600 tech firms, including Google, Facebook, and Uber, have headquarters and/or a major presence in Pittsburgh. To add, the region also serves as long-time federal agency headquarters for cyber defense, software engineering, robotics, energy research and the nuclear navy.
Today, Pittsburgh’s authentic and hard-working population of 305,000 million have transformed the city into one of the U.S.’s most beautiful and progressive cities.
It is estimated that Pennsylvania is home to 1 million small businesses in a wide variety of industries and categories. Small businesses in Pennsylvania make up 98.2% of the total businesses in the state with the remaining 1.8% being large or enterprise level companies.
As of the latest SUSB census, Pennsylvania small businesses employed over 2 million people in the state representing 47% of the total employees in Pennsylvania.
As a four-season city, Pittsburgh experiences the best mother nature has to offer with milder temperatures throughout the year. As a result, average Pittsburgh electricity consumption is 10,402 kWh per year, which is slightly lower than the national average.
Electricity for Pittsburgh business and residential users is generated across the regional electricity grid, and several entities are collectively responsible for providing electricity:
See today's electricity rates for cities in Pennsylvania.