What To Do When Renewables Aren’t On The Rise

Franco Lucato | Shutterstock.com

Today, PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center released its newest report on renewable energy production in Pennsylvania, entitled Renewables on the Rise 2022.

Sadly, the report showed that while renewable energy is growing leaps and bounds across the nation, Pennsylvania has some of the slowest growth in the nation.  The commonwealth ranks 4th worst for percent growth in solar and 5th worst for overall growth of renewables – wind, solar, and geothermal – combined. This is even behind most “red” states and most states with a lot of fossil fuel production like Texas, ranked 2nd in solar generation and 1st in wind generation, and Oklahoma ranks 3rd in wind generation.

We were excited to be joined by some of our greatest environmental champs in the legislature and other clean energy advocates in releasing Renewables on the Rise, including Senator Comitta, Rep. Rabb, Liz Robinson from Philadelphia Solar Energy Association, and others:

“As neighboring states continue to make important investments in renewable energy, Pennsylvania is at a crossroads in fully realizing the economic, public health, and environmental benefits of this rapidly advancing industry,” said State Senator Carolyn Comitta, Minority Chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee. “Embracing the full potential of renewables is an emissions-reducing, cost-saving, economy-building, and forward-thinking goal for Pennsylvania families, workers, children, and communities.”

Garen Meguerian | TPIN

“The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has a unique and critical opportunity to commit to a clean energy future as one of only two states with constitutions containing a provision dedicated to environmental stewardship,” said Pennsylvania State Representative Chris Rabb. “As one of the largest net exporters of energy of any state, Pennsylvania can distinguish itself by becoming a leader in transitioning to renewable energy toward lowering and stabilizing utilities cost for consumers, creating family-sustaining jobs and addressing our climate crisis once and for all.”

“Penn Environment’s new report reveals the actual facts and figures to prove what many of us have suspected for years: Pennsylvania has fallen behind, WAY behind,” says Liz Robinson, the executive director of Philadelphia Solar Energy Association. “The global transition to a clean energy economy is well underway, and Pennsylvania is sitting on the sidelines. We are losing jobs, losing talent, losing manufacturing and other opportunities to neighboring states. It is time to wake up, Pennsylvania!”

For Pennsylvania to catch up, PennEnvironment Research and Policy Center is recommending state policies like updating Pennsylvania’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards, promoting community solar, increasing incentives for renewables, and setting the state on a pathway towards 100% renewable energy would help spur clean energy even further in the Commonwealth. You can push for 100% renewable energy in Pennsylvania by adding your name to this petition in support.


Ellie Kerns

Climate Field Organizer, PennEnvironment

Ellie works on PennEnvironment's climate change campaign and helps move forward climate initiatives. She lives in Philadelphia, where she enjoys photography and gardening.

David Masur

Executive Director, PennEnvironment

Started on staff: 1994 B.A., University of Wisconsin-Madison As executive director, David spearheads the issue advocacy, civic engagement campaigns, and long-term organizational building for PennEnvironment. He also oversees PennPIRG and other organizations within The Public Interest Network that are engaged in social change across Pennsylvania. David’s areas of expertise include fracking, global warming, environmental enforcement and litigation, and clean energy and land use policy in Pennsylvania. David has served on the environmental transition teams for Gov. Tom Wolf and Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. Under David’s leadership, PennEnvironment has won the two largest citizen suit penalties in Pennsylvania history against illegal polluters under the federal Clean Water Act and the largest citizen suit penalty under the federal Clean Air Act in state history.

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