How to Sign up for Green Energy in DC if your Utility Company is Pepco: Resident Edition

Notes:

  • There will not be an interruption to your service, and Pepco will still be your utility.
  • Your electricity currently comes from DC’s default fuel mix (coal 34.26%, nuclear 34.70%, natural gas 26.34%, oil 0.20%, and renewables 4.46% according to the DC Public Service Commission’s most recent Report on Fuel Mix). Switching to wind or solar energy simply means you instruct your utility to purchase 100% of your energy from wind and/or solar.
  • Switching to wind or solar energy is an investment in wind or solar technology. Eventually wind and solar will be the least expensive energy options for everyone everywhere. Purchasing wind or solar now makes that shift happen faster.
  • Widespread use of wind or solar energy (1) significantly mitigates climate change and (2) makes mountaintop removal to mine coal in Appalachia, fracking, and oil pipelines that threaten livelihoods literally become things of the past, and (3) mitigates wars fought for oil - and thus all the horrors that come with war. The lessening of suffering that independent, renewable energy leads to is quite simply phenomenal.
  • Renters can make the switch as well as homeowners. Whoever pays the electricity bill each month can make the switch.

Steps:

  1. Know your options. DC has several companies that offer 100% wind and/or solar plans. They are:

2. Look at the available plans for each company by clicking on the links above to view each company’s plans or by using the cheat sheet (last updated February 2, 2019) for wind and/or solar plans below:

Wind and solar plans for DC, from lowest price per kWh to the highest price per kWh

3. Identify your current kwh (kilowatt-hour) unit price by going to page three of your Pepco bill. Under “Supply Charges,” there is a sentence, “Based on billed use, your average annual price to compare is X cents per kwh.” Compare this number with the kwh unit price in each green energy plan. If you want to compare annual and monthly costs, the steps are below — just a little simple math.

  • Identify your annual kWh usage. On page three of your Pepco bill, under “Energy Usage History,” you’ll see each month’s kWh usage.
  • Add up your kWh usage per month to get your annual kWh usage.
  • Identify your Transmission Services current kWh (kilowatt-hour) unit price by going to page three of your Pepco bill. Under “Transmission Charges,” there is a sentence, “Based on billed use, your average annual price to compare is X cents per kWh.” Note the “Distribution Services” costs (page 2 of your Pepco bill) will not change. The “Transmission Services” costs (page 3 of your Pepco bill) will change.
  • Multiply your annual kWh usage by your annual average price. This gives your annual Transmission Services cost.
  • Multiply your annual kWh usage by the kWh unit price in each green energy plan to get the annual Transmission Services cost for each green energy plan.
  • Compare the annual Transmission Services cost of your current plan and the annual Transmission Services cost of the green energy plans. You can divide the annual the annual Transmission Services cost by 12 to get the estimated cost/month for each plan.
  • If there is a cost increase, this is a kind nudge to make the switch — you’d be making an investment to end climate change, mountaintop removal mining, fracking, Standing Rock, etc. We can contribute significantly to ending these issues simply by switching to wind and solar in our homes.

4. Choose a plan and sign up as instructed on the company’s website.