The City of Philadelphia has flipped the switch on Adams Solar!

Completing the renewable energy project is a huge milestone. We are now one major step closer toward achieving the City’s goal of carbon neutral municipal operations. And we’re not stopping here. The City recently issued a Request for Proposals to purchase even more electricity from clean, renewable energy sources. 

What is the Adams Solar project?

In 2018, the City entered into a long-term agreement with the Philadelphia Energy Authority (PEA) to purchase solar electricity. PEA in turn entered into the 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Energix Renewables, the owners of the Adams Solar facility. Through this agreement, the City committed to purchase electricity for 20 years at a low fixed rate that is competitive with conventional electricity prices, saving the City money in the long run. 

The 700-acre project is located near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, generating 70 megawatts (MW) of energy from 230,000 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. It is among the country’s largest municipal PPAs.

How much money will the City save through the purchase of renewable electricity?

Buying electricity from Adams Solar will supply the City with clean, renewable electricity at a price that’s on par with average electricity prices from the past three years. This fixed rate is expected to save the City money over the term of the 20-year agreement as electricity prices increase. 

What is a Power Purchase Agreement?

A PPA is a financial arrangement where a third-party developer owns, operates, and maintains a large-scale solar PV system. The generated electricity is sold at a set price over a predetermined period, enabling the buyer to receive stable, low-cost electricity. The owner/operator receives income from the sale of electricity as well as potential tax incentives.

By entering into a PPA, the City was able to obtain a steady supply of clean electricity without incurring many of the traditional risks associated with developing a large energy project.

What are the project’s environmental benefits?

The City’s energy portfolio now includes a mix of close to 30 percent renewable electricity. We’re making significant progress toward the Municipal Energy Master Plan goal of powering municipal facilities with 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030. 

By purchasing electricity from Adams Solar rather than traditional energy sources, the City is adding 150,000 megawatt-hours of locally-produced, clean energy onto the electricity grid. The City is committed to achieving city-wide carbon neutrality by 2050, while cutting greenhouse gas emissions from the City’s built environment in half by 2030.

How does the project address the City’s clean energy workforce development goals?

Adams Solar is a great example of how the City can continue to help grow the clean energy economy locally, statewide, and beyond. In addition to supporting 1,070 direct implementation jobs throughout the project’s design and construction, Adams Solar served as a hands-on training ground for graduates of PEA’s solar training initiative, the Green Retrofit Immersive Training Program (GRIT). Trainees were able to sharpen their electrical, mechanical, and project management skills by working on and with the Energix project team. GRIT is a 12-week, hands-on training program that places participants into living wage jobs with contractors performing green home retrofits. PEA is actively accepting new applications online

What’s next?

The Office of Sustainability and PEA have released a Request for Proposals for the development of additional renewable energy projects. The City hopes to purchase enough electricity from solar, wind or other renewables to fulfill the remaining 70 percent of municipal electricity needs with renewable energy. More information about this opportunity can be found at