50% of all PA Government energy use will be from Solar, starting 2025

22 April 2024- Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro joined Department of General Services (DGS) Secretary Reggie McNeil, Constellation President & CEO Joseph Dominguez, and Lightsource bp Senior Vice President Alyssa Edwards to unveil the Commonwealth’s renewable energy initiative, the Pennsylvania Project to Utilize Light and Solar Energy (PA PULSE). By next year, Pennsylvania will get 50 percent of its electricity from ten new solar arrays around the Commonwealth – making Pennsylvania the first state in the country to commit to getting half of its energy from solar power.

DGS has entered into a contract with Constellation for a 15-year fixed price agreement – so even as energy costs rise, Pennsylvania’s rate will stay the same – saving Pennsylvania taxpayer dollars while providing reliable, sustainable, and affordable electricity in the long term.

“When I announced my energy plan last month, I made clear that we must reject the false choice between protecting jobs and the economy and protecting the environment,” said Governor Josh Shapiro. “The historic PA PULSE initiative, which began under the previous Administration, is proof we can do both – investing in reliable, affordable power in the long-term. With our energy plan and innovative projects like PA PULSE, my Administration will create energy jobs, take real action to address climate change pollution, ensure consumers pay less on their bills, and continue to ensure Pennsylvania maintains its energy independence for years to come.”

“We applaud Governor Shapiro for his leadership on growing Pennsylvania’s economy with clean power at the foundation,” said Joe Dominguez, president and CEO of Constellation. “At Constellation, we are proud to partner with the state on this project to power vital state agencies with clean energy and keep the Commonwealth on course to a carbon-free future.”

“The successful installation and launch of the first three solar farms during the first quarter of this year created over 200 union jobs and is a promising start toward our renewable energy goals,” said DGS Secretary Reggie McNeil. “Upon the completion of all 10 solar arrays, PA PULSE will enable the Commonwealth to slash its carbon footprint by a staggering 157,800 metric tons of CO2 annually. That is equivalent to removing emissions from nearly 35,000 fuel-burning cars each year.”

The PA PULSE initiative includes ten solar arrays, built, owned, and operated by Lightsource bp across six Pennsylvania counties: Columbia, Juniata, Crawford, Northumberland, Snyder, and York. In total, the project will supply 361,000 megawatt-hours of electricity annually to 16 Commonwealth agencies, making it the largest solar commitment by any state. The solar arrays are setback from nearby property lines and use discreet fencing with wildlife planted around them to avoid disrupting residents. Many solar farms also become habitats for new wildlife, and the soil will be protected from erosion.

Governor Shapiro’s plan calls for a second legislative initiative, as well, to build out a more diverse, reliable, and affordable energy sector. Pennsylvania is currently 45th in the nation in terms of investing in clean energy sources like wind, solar, and hydropower. That’s why Governor Shapiro’s plan introduces the Pennsylvania Reliable Energy Sustainability Standard (PRESS), which the Governor and his office say will attract federal investments in the Commonwealth and keep utility costs low in the long-term by building out the fleet of power sources the state will need for the decades to come.