With 1.6 million electric customers and a 2,100-square-mile service area, PECO is the largest energy provider in Pennsylvania. The company was founded in 1881 as the Brush Electric Light Company and mostly focused on commercial and street lighting. In 1885, Brush merged with the United States Electric Lighting Company of Pennsylvania. Over the next few decades, the merged companies absorbed several more independent providers, and changed their name to the Philadelphia Electric Company. Then, in 2000, they joined the Exelon Company.
PECO’s main service area is in southeastern Pennsylvania. The company provides electricity to customers in Philadelphia as well as Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and southeastern York counties. It also provides natural gas to Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and eastern Lancaster counties.
According to information from an Exelon 10-k report, about half of PECO’s power comes from nuclear energy, 12 percent comes from fossil fuels and renewable sources, and the remaining 35 percent from other supplies. The company owns and operates more than 1,000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines as well as 13,000 miles of aerial distribution lines.
PECO also has a natural gas storage facility in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania with a capacity of 1.2 billion feet and a propane-air plant in Chester, Pennsylvania with a capacity of almost 2 million gallons. They serve about 511,000 natural gas customers.
About 35% of PECO customers can choose their power and gas suppliers with PECO still delivering the energy to their homes and businesses. There are several renewable energy suppliers registered with PECO, including Frontier Utilities, Inspire Energy, and Clearview Energy. PECO includes a Prices to Compare section in each monthly bill, and customers can determine whether they’re getting a competitive rate.
PECO was listed by Site Selection Magazine as one of the top ten utility companies for economic development. They were also named Pennsylvania’s safest utility company by the state’s Department of Labor and by the Energy Association of Pennsylvania. They support almost 10,000 local jobs and have an annual economic impact of $4.5 billion.
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