Community & climate groups oppose PECO rate hike
Today, the PA Public Utility Commission is holding two public hearings in Philadelphia on a controversial rate hike plan filed by PECO at the end of March. The proposal would increase PECO’s revenues by $82 million per year by charging an additional $40 annually on the average customer’s electricity bill.
The Power Local Green Jobs campaign, joining with labor and consumer groups, issued the following statement condemning the proposal:
Kim Huynh, Campaign Director of Earth Quaker Action Team:
“PECO already profits more than $1 million per day off its customers in the Philadelphia area, the poorest big city in the country. This proposal pads its shareholders’ pockets while sticking to the same polluting energy. PECO’s rate hike flies in the face of the moral leadership our region deserves. It demonstrates how out of touch PECO is with the needs of its customers for affordable electricity and clean air.”
“The recent severe weather in the region caused by climate-polluting energy should be a wake-up call to PECO. The tragic irony is that in a year of historic dangerous storms wreaking havoc on homes, roads, and public safety, PECO willfully continues to sideline clean, affordable, job-creating solar. Bottomline, this rate hike would be a bad deal for customers and the climate.”
Rabbi Julie Greenberg, Co-Chair of POWER’s Climate Justice & Jobs team:
“PECO has more than doubled its rate of shutting off people’s power in the last ten years. As PECO leaves tens of thousands of families in the dark every year, this rate hike will only intensify the crisis facing our most vulnerable residents.”
“Climate change-fueled storms and poverty are immediate threats to Philadelphia’s neighborhoods, multiplying the hardship on poor communities and communities of color. Across the region, vulnerable communities are also paving the way, showing that cheaper solar can lower customer bills and create family-sustaining jobs. PECO should follow their lead instead of doubling down on its current short-sighted energy policies.”
Power Local Green Jobs is a faith-based economic justice campaign led by Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT) and Philadelphians Organized to Witness Empower and Rebuild (POWER). Begun in 2015, the campaign uses nonviolent direct action to pressure PECO, the largest utility in PA, to spur job growth through solar expansion in areas with high unemployment. Learn more at www.powerinterfaith.org and www.eqat.org.