The County of Bucks this week joined with its neighbors to create the Sustainable Energy Partnership of Southeast Pennsylvania, establishing a wholesale purchasing agreement that will curtail the costs of electricity used in county government operations.
Composed of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery counties, the partnership will allow county governments to work together to negotiate low and stable energy prices, access renewable energy in the future and use resources more efficiently. The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) will serve as coordinator of the Energy Board.
The Bucks County Commissioners approved the County’s entry into the partnership Wednesday during their regular public meeting in a unanimous vote.
“Since taking office, this administration has made a steadfast commitment to sustainability. From making it a focal point of our Transition Report to signing onto the Sierra Club’s Ready For 100 campaign to hiring Bucks County’s first Sustainability Officer, we have been all in on responsible energy solutions,” said Commissioner Chair Bob Harvie. “Joining this Sustainable Energy Partnership represents the culmination of over three years of work and is one of the initiatives I am most proud of in my term as Commissioner. I would like to thank my fellow Commissioners Marseglia and DiGirolamo for their votes on and acceptance of this critical plan that will have a lasting positive impact on the environment and the County’s bottom line.”
The Commissioners would like to thank their partners at DVRPC and neighboring county administrations, as well as Bucks County Solicitor Amy Fitzpatrick, county Deputy Chief Finance Officer Russell Rice, county Purchasing Director Liz Gates, county Planning Commission Executive Director Evan Stone and county Sustainability Officer Neale Dougherty for their invaluable efforts toward making this project a reality.
A dedicated wholesale account is a unique electricity procurement mechanism currently utilized by other large local governments. It will allow the counties to access low, transparent, and stable electricity prices. It will also help the counties meet renewable energy targets through access to large-scale renewables (< 10MWs), and add additional parties, such as municipalities, authorities, and schools, in the future.
The Partnership will receive ongoing energy market intelligence, guidance, and direction from a consultant, Enel X, who also works as the advisor to wholesale accounts led by the City of Philadelphia, among others. The Partnership will contract with a supplier to build a portfolio of electricity procurements over time, purchased according to the Partnership-approved cost-management strategy that outlines objectives for electricity and renewable energy.
The Partnership’s Energy Board will meet quarterly with Enel X to evaluate market conditions, approve future procurements, and develop strategies for renewable energy procurement and onboarding new members.
The first meeting of the board will be convened in November.
Media Contact: James O’Malley, 215-348-6414, [email protected]