Leading the Transition From a Dirty Energy Past to a Clean Energy Future
From early coal mines in the mid-1700s to the nation’s first oil well in 1859, Pennsylvania is no stranger to extractive energy industries. The commonwealth is the second largest producer of natural gas and the fourth largest producer of coal in the nation.
Dirty energy sources emit carbon, methane and other pollutants that contribute to climate change, threaten public health and harm our environment. Pennsylvania is the third largest carbon emitting state, and we have a major role to play in reducing emissions.
Clean, renewable energy comes from sources that are naturally renewing, don’t emit significant greenhouse gasses and don’t contribute to climate change, including solar, wind and geothermal. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania only gets about 5% of its energy from renewable sources, but we have a great opportunity to become a clean energy leader. The future is in our hands.
And it doesn’t stop with the direct giveaways. While you don’t pay a sales tax on home heating fuel, energy efficient purchases like insulation, solar panels, or more efficient windows are taxed.
Learn more from our Fossil Fuel Subsidy Report >
Pennsylvania was an early leader in promoting clean energy such as wind and solar, but now, our clean energy portfolio is falling behind. If we tie ourselves to long-term investments in fossil fuels by building new infrastructure and subsidizing fuel use, it will be harder to transition in the future.
Recent weather events like Superstorm Sandy and the Blizzard of 2016 have raised fresh concerns that Pennsylvania’s aging electricity infrastructure is incapable of powering the commonwealth under the strains of global climate change. As global temperatures continue to increase, extreme weather events will continue to strain, and potentially break, the century old grid system.
PennFuture believes we need to dispense with the notion of natural gas as a bridge fuel and move expeditiously toward a clean energy economy. The risks to people, place and planet are simply too great.
PennFuture’s team across the state works on the following solutions:
By implementing these rules, intended to be flexible and tailored for Pennsylvania’s needs, we have the opportunity to reduce pollution, create jobs and save consumers money.
PennFuture’s tool kit of clean energy strategies for communities and individuals will help modernize homes, neighborhoods, and public infrastructure with wise investments for our future.
Outdated local ordinances can limit clean energy development or favor natural gas companies. PennFuture is working to remove those barriers, holds government accountable, and preserves the character of communities.
PennFuture is working with partners to ensure sufficient financial, educational and other resources will be available to communities who have relied upon coal for their livelihoods.
But we are up against powerful special interests.
Tell your legislator to govern for citizens – not the fossil fuel industry.
The natural gas industry said energy costs would go down. They said we’d be energy independent. Then they took our land and sent our resources overseas. Tell regulators, NO MORE broken promises.
When ‘king coal’ moves away, coal workers are left without a livelihood, the environment is scarred, and communities are destroyed. We’re working to ensure a fair transition for all.
Western Pennsylvania has come a long way in reclaiming our natural environment and improving air quality, but a new massive development threatens public health.
We need your help.
Stand Up to the Big Polluters!