Before the Electricity Generation Customer Choice and Competition Act became a reality, all of the electricity purchased or transmitted in a specific region was sold by one company. Electric utilities were in charge of the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity. The nine electric utilities in Pennsylvania operated as a regulated monopoly, and had the sole rights to sell electricity in a particular region. This meant that the utility supplied the power, read the meters, fixed any line related problems, and determined what the power sources of electric generation would be. Because electricity consumers had no option to switch companies, utilities were able to install any facilities that they felt were necessary, with little input from residents and consumers. Since the Electricity Generation Customer Choice and Competition Act was fully implemented in Pennsylvania on January 1, 2000, every resident has the option to choose the company that generates their electricity.
The Council seeks to work with community members to keep the public apprised of their energy choices. Clean Air Council recently intervened in the First Energy-Allegheny merger case to gain additional help for low income electricity consumers in the Pennsylvania service territory. The Council also uses the Sustainable Energy Education Program (SEEP) to educate the public about energy choices and recommends electric providers using renewable energy.