CT Residents’ Options for Electricity Source

Our friend Barth in Chester asked us some questions about electricity choice in Connecticut. This is another one of them:

What options do CT residents have for their electricity source?

Energy Q's-iStock-623185648

Connecticut’s per capita electricity use is among the lowest in the nation and its total capacity of existing generating plants located in the state is about 8,700 MegaWatts (MW). In comparison with larger states, that’s not a huge amount, however, the state has been a net exporter of electricity to its neighbors since 2009.

Consequently, Connecticut has a variety of power generation types within the state that are used to meet demand. While about half of the mix is fossil fuel, the other half of the supply consists of nuclear and a growing amount of renewable and green sources:

1 conventional coal-fired steam power plant. The Bridgeport Harbor plant is scheduled to be closed by 2021 and replaced by a new combined cycle Nat gas/ ultra-low sulfur distillate (ULSD) plant producing 485 MW.

1 utility scale solar farm.  Somers Solar Center, LLC (5 MW).

1 utility scale wind farm.  BNE operates two utility-scale wind turbines (2.5 MW) in Colebrook.

Five new clean energy projects state wide are being proposed which include wind, solar, and fuel cell technology.

1 pumped storage stationRocky River Generating Station is the nation’s first of its kind. built in 1928, it has a capacity of 29 MW.

8 biomass plants. Most are municipal operations.

13 hydroelectric dams.

24 Petroleum liquids fueled plants. These include kerosene aviation fuel burner. Half are in the Thames River basin area alone. Although one-third of the nameplate generating capacity in Connecticut is petroleum-fired, petroleum contributed less than 2% of the state’s net generation in 2015. The higher-cost petroleum fuels are used to cover peak power demand.

1 nuclear power station. Millstone Power Station with a capacity of 2,122.5 MW. In 2015, Millstone supplied 46% of Connecticut’s net electricity generation

30 natural gas generators. In 2015, generation from nuclear power and natural gas were almost equal. Nearly all electricity generation in the state comes from independent producers and municipal utilities.

Do any retailers support green energy in Connecticut?

Yes! Depending on whether you have Eversource or UI, there are about 28 or 29 green plans (respectively) offered throughout the state with renewable energy percentages of 50% or better. All of these plans, including those offered by Eversource and UI, purchase some amount of power from green energy companies right here in Connecticut. But because there are far more other companies competing to offer green renewable energy throughout North America, both energy retailers and the two local utilities can also buy electricity from them. For example, if we were magically able to track individual electrons in bulk transmission lines, some wind power from the upper midwest (along with electricity from many other sources) would find its way into your home in New Haven.

Green energy, like solar and wind, tends to be more expensive due to higher start up costs. When consumers chose green energy, they are voting with their dollars to support clean renewables and a cleaner environment. When consumers chose from competing green energy suppliers, they get the best affordable green Connecticut energy deal for their home.

Do you have questions about Connecticut’s Retail  Electricity market?  Just ask us!

Send us your question from the Contact Page with “Connecticut Electricity Choice” at the head of your message.

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