Maryland electricity consumers remain reticent about the proposed merger between Constellation Energy and Exelon Corp, but history suggests the state might not need to worry, according to The Baltimore Sun.
Constellation, Maryland's primary utility company, has proposed selling itself to the Chicago-based Exelon as the two companies look to consolidate their hold over the alternative power sector. As with prior attempted mergers, the Maryland Public Service Commission could veto the deal on concerns it will not directly benefit Maryland consumers.
However, the merger between Philadelphia's Peco Energy and Chicago's Unicom Corp. that created Exelon actually proved substantially beneficial to Pennsylvania residents, with major investments in the grid and lower electricity prices.
"Peco has always been an essential part of Philadelphia and that was part of the concern with that merger," electricity consumer advocate Sonny Popowsky told the Sun. "I think they have maintained their Southeast Pennsylvania focus reasonably well."
As with their northern neighbor, Maryland residents do not rely solely on their utility companies to set their electricity rates. The Maryland Public Service Commission notes that more than 34,000 residents switched electricity suppliers in September of this year alone, providing another important way to help control costs.