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Learn About Penelec

Penelec is a Pennsylvania electric company headquartered in Erie. It is one of 10 regulated electric utilities owned by FirstEnergy, a major electric company serving 6 million customers from Ohio to New Jersey. Penelec generates energy via a combination of coal, nuclear, gas/oil and wind energy generation plants. These generation plants contribute to a 17,000 megawatts of capacity in the parent company service area.

In recent years, FirstEnergy and Penelec have been upgrading transmission systems through its Energizing the Future initiative. From 2014 through 2017, the companies are taking part in transmission projects throughout the neighboring states to upgrade the 24,000 miles of infrastructure with a $4.2 billion investment. According to its website, Penelec is dedicated to offering safe and reliable service to all customers.

Energy choice in Pennsylvania and PA Power Switch

When the Electricity Generation Customer Choice and Competition Act went into effect in 1997 the electric utility industry became deregulated, creating energy choice for consumers. This change established the separation of deregulated electric generation suppliers (EGSs) and regulated electric distribution companies (EDCs). An electric generation supplier sells electricity at competitive rates to the consumer and an electric distribution company, or regulated public utility, distributes electricity to a consumer's home. Penelec is one of several EDCs in Pennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) created the PA Power Switch program once all caps on electricity rates in Pennsylvania expired in 2011. This program, capitalizing on energy choice, ensures that consumers and business owners have adequate information to make a decision on an alternative Pennsylvania electric company for energy supply. With the opportunity to choose an energy supplier comes the ability to select a competitive energy rate throughout the state. Whether an Erie resident chooses one supplier or another, he or she still has access to Penelec in Erie.

Penelec community involvement

Penelec supports the FirstEnergy Foundation's goals of improving safety initiatives, promoting economic development and advancing the workforce through professional development and education. The foundation has contributed nearly $8.5 million to fundraisers and nonprofits that benefit its local communities. Stated on the foundation's website, its guiding philosophy is that helping the greater good is better for business.

As a Pennsylvania electric company, Penelec, through the foundation, participates in two corporate programs with Harvest for Hunger and United Way that give back to the community and those with Penelec electricity. The relationships with Harvest for Hunger and United Way have accrued more than 2.6 million meals in 2015 and $35 million to Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey campaigns, respectively. These partnerships, in addition to other sponsorships and continuous employee volunteerism, make up the foundation's and Penelec's involvement in local and surrounding communities.

  • Area served: Western and northern Pennsylvania
  • Emergency contact information: 1-888-544-4877

Updated: 2-2-16.