Pennsylvania, which claims to have been the first in the nation five years ago to offer customers a choice in their electricity supplier, celebrated the program's anniversary with a two year contract to buy enough renewable energy to meet 5% of the state government's electricity supply. Governor Mark Schweiker awarded the contract for 100 million kWh to Community Energy Inc, with 20% to come from the 5 MW Mill Run wind farm, developed by Zilkha Renewable Energy LLC, near Fayette and the 9 MW Somerset wind farm, developed by Somerset Wind Energy, a company created by Atlantic Renewable Energy Corporation and Zilkha. Both projects use Enron 1.5 MW turbines (Windpower Monthly, June 2001). The state kicked off its Electric Choice program, which enabled companies like Community Energy to enter the market, five years ago. "As we mark the program's fifth anniversary, I want to express my commitment to Electric Choice, a national model that is working -- saving money and providing choices," Schweiker says. The contract began on January 1. Nearly 120,000 consumers who have switched to a green electricity supplier since the program was initiated as a pilot project in 1997 have saved $4 billion, according to the state's regulator.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol