PECO Energy Company (PECO), a utility of Exelon Generation Company, LLC (Exelon), has filed a plan with the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC), seeking approval to purchase 6 megawatts (MW) of solar renewable energy credits (REC). This is a part of PECO’s ongoing fulfillment of the state’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards (AEPS).

If the plan gets approved, this would make PECO the first PA utility to purchase and bank solar credits and also supports the company’s ongoing environmental efforts.

Enough power to supply around 1,000 homes for 10 years, it would take around 8 football fields of solar panels to generate 6 MW of energy. Once completed, the company’s proposal would result in the same environmental benefit as planting over 48,000 acres of trees or not driving more than 133 million miles.

The AEPS legislation needs that 3.5% of the energy used by PECO customers is generated from renewable resources like wind and solar by 2011. These needs are measured by RECs. RECs are sold by electric generators on a one-to-one basis each time they generate one megawatt-hour of renewable energy.

To fulfill these requirements, PECO seeks PUC approval to conduct a request for proposals (RFP) to buy 80,000 solar energy credits during 10 years. Both solar farms and companies with big rooftop solar panel systems would be eligible to participate.

“As an energy company, being environmentally responsible is not just a nice thing to do, it is the right thing to do,” said Denis O’Brien, PECO president and chief executive officer. “The increased use of renewable types of energy is an important part of our efforts. By acting now, in advance of the requirement, we are helping encourage new solar projects and the development of the renewable energy market in Pennsylvania.”