The Pennsylvania Conservative Energy Forum (PennCEF) was created by conservatives, for conservatives who want the Commonwealth to adopt an all-of-the-above diversified energy portfolio that includes an emphasis on moving to clean, renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. PennCEF believes that all-of-the-above energy policy will help create good paying local jobs across the state, improve our grid and national security, conserve our natural resources, and position America to compete in the global energy marketplace, while securing energy independence.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has a long history of fossil fuel extraction. We are the second largest electricity producer in the nation, ranking as the country’s fourth largest coal producer and the second largest natural gas producer (with gas providing the bulk of the state’s energy). Today only 4% of Pennsylvania’s net electricity generation comes from renewable sources, but this number is primed to rise. While natural gas remains an important source of energy globally and stimulates economic growth locally, it is vital that we diversify our energy portfolio with new renewable technologies for a variety of economic, environmental, and security reasons.
Transitioning to clean, renewable energy insulates us from sudden and unpredictable fluctuations in the price of natural gas, creates local jobs that can’t be shipped overseas, attracts investments to our state from companies looking to put down roots, conserves our natural resources – helping to protect our outdoor sporting and hunting pastimes – and increases our grid and national security. The volatility of gas markets, and the fact that utilities are not building new coal plants here at home or abroad, means we must look for and support market access for innovative technologies that are changing the way we produce and consume electricity.
The lack of conservative voices in the broad energy debate up to this point drove us to form PennCEF, a forum where conservatives can discuss and embrace smart and balanced energy policy solutions. We seek to educate our fellow conservatives, policy leaders, and the public on the benefits of a diversified energy portfolio, and to spur Pennsylvania conservatives to action, advocating and adopting affordable, reliable, clean, and efficient energy that will power generations to come.