Green Options

Electricity from “Green” Sources

The majority of electricity generated in Maryland is primarily from nuclear energy and fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas and oil. Now it is possible to purchase electricity produced from “renewable” sources such as wind, sun (solar energy), water (hydropower), plant waste (biomass), and a variety of “alternative” sources, such as “waste heat” in combined heat-and-power plants.

How Does Green Power Work?

If you elect to purchase renewable energy, the electricity generated is no different than that generated from other sources. There is no need to install any equipment or make any other physical changes to your property. Your electricity will continue to be delivered to you over the electric grid. The green power you purchase is simply delivered to the electric grid on your behalf.

What is a Renewable Energy Certificate (REC)?

A REC is like a receipt for renewable electricity that is delivered to the transmission system. One REC represents one megawatt of electricity generated by a renewable source. RECs represent renewable electricity that is produced both locally and nationally.  Retail electricity suppliers purchase RECs on behalf of customers who want to buy renewable electricity.

Why Choose Green Power?

By purchasing green power, you are helping achieve a cleaner, healthier environment. Increasing renewable resources means that emissions from fossil-fueled power plants are decreased. Maryland’s energy security is also improved as the fuel sources for electricity production become more diverse.

How Do I Choose Between Various Green Power Options?

Not all green power is the same. Some green power is certified by independent third parties and some is not.  Some green power is generated locally while other green power is generated nationally. Green power is also available in varying amounts. Ask any retail electricity supplier whether a green or renewable option is available and what verification standards they use to ensure the quality of the green or renewable energy.  Click here for green options available from retail electricity suppliers.