Pennsylvania to Produce 50% of State Government’s Energy from Solar Power by 2023

Solar panels.

Keywords: Sustainability & Environment

With the growing push for alternative energies to fossil fuels and coal, many governments and companies have begun shifting their energy reliance to new sources. Pennsylvania is the latest state to make serious efforts to reduce overall carbon emissions. The state plans on achieving these plans by committing to a major solar energy project that will provide nearly 50% of the state government’s total energy demand by 2023.

Details on New State Solar Project

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf recently announced a major new solar project as part of a clean energy initiative, GreenGov. The project, titled Pennsylvania PULSE, or Project to Utilize Light and Solar Energy, will consist of new solar energy arrays spread out across seven locations in six different counties in the state. The counties in the state which will be receiving the new solar arrays are Columbia, Juniata, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, and York. When completed, Pennsylvania PULSE will be a project worth 191 megawatts.

Lightsource BP has been contracted to build and operate the solar arrays with the energy then being purchased through renewable energy credits by Constellation. Constellation is currently in a 15-year contract with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to provide energy to the state.

Pennsylvania PULSE is set to be finished and launched by 2023, with the expectations that it will then produce an incredible 361,000 megawatt-hours of electricity every single year for the rest of its operations. This will cover nearly 50% of all state government energy demand every year. On top of this, the project would be a major boost toward the emissions reduction efforts currently taking place in the state. In fact, when fully operational, the solar panels will help reduce carbon emissions by 157,800 metric tons every year, which is the equivalent of taking 34,000 cars off the road.

Other Benefits of the Solar Project and Statewide Green Efforts

Outside of the direct carbon dioxide emissions reduction and boost in energy production that Pennsylvania PULSE will offer, the project will also have a modest effect on local economies by creating over 400 jobs.

The project is part of a much larger green initiative taking place across the state of Pennsylvania and aligns with efforts to reduce statewide carbon emissions and create a more sustainable economy. Considering the major economic reliance the state still has on coal, being the third-largest producer in the US, this effort could make a serious difference. The state had previously committed to lowering overall emissions by 25% by 2025 and over 80% by 2050 in comparison to 2005 levels.

When commenting on the newest solar project, Governor Tom Wolf said, “In issuing the GreenGov challenge, I charged state government with leading by example in demonstrating sustainable governance and lowering greenhouse gas emissions to reduce the risks of climate change in Pennsylvania. This included significantly reducing energy use and pursuing an ambitious goal of obtaining at least 40 percent of electricity from clean energy generated in state. I commend General Services for their GreenGov leadership in not only meeting this goal but exceeding it.”

Thomas Price

Tom Price is a writer focusing on entertainment and sports features. He has a degree from NYU in English with a minor in Creative Writing. He has been previously published for Washington Square News, Dignitas, CBR, and Numbers on the Boards.

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