Puget Sound Energy (PSE), like all major utilities in Washington State, has long offered a Green Power program. This program allows you to enroll and pay an additional amount per kwh to get green energy. When we used to be PSE customers, we participated in the Green Power program in which we would pay a premium each month to make certain that what electricity we did buy from PSE (what we needed beyond what our solar pv produced), was sourced from clean energy sources. The main component in the Green Power program has been wind energy from a couple of large utility scale wind projects owned by PSE.
Now PSE is offering a solar specific green power program called Solar Choice. The Solar Choice program is similar to the existing Green Power program in that it offers customers the ability to pay a premium in order to make certain that PSE sources and allocates sufficient solar pv generated electricity to cover the amount you sign up to buy.
While this is very different from purchasing your own solar pv array for your own house, it is a good idea if you are a renter or have a shady roof and can’t install your own solar pv. The benefits are that you get the satisfaction of knowing there is some solar energy being produced somewhere with your name on those electrons, and you can participate or not as you choose. The more solar choices people have, the better.
If you own your house and have a sunny roof, its probably better to choose to make an upgrade to your house that will make clean power and decrease your home’s energy bills for decades.