Massachusetts utilities unveil $4 billion energy savings plan


Tom May,
NSTAR Chairman,
President & CEO
Boston, MA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — May 12, 2009 – In a move to dramatically reduce energy use in Massachusetts, a coalition of the Commonwealth’s leading energy providers has unveiled a three-year plan to deliver services to residents and businesses that will ultimately net more than $4 billion in energy savings.

If the plan is approved, the coalition will begin offering an increased level of services to their customers in 2010.

The coalition, made up of Massachusetts utilities NSTAR, National Grid, Western Massachusetts Electric, New England Gas, Unitil, Berkshire Gas, Bay State Gas, Blackstone Gas, and the municipal aggregator Cape Light Compact, drafted the plan in response to the Green Communities Act. The Act calls for the Commonwealth’s energy efficiency program administrators to develop a statewide plan to meet energy demand by first investing in energy efficiency and demand reduction before purchasing new energy supply.

“Never before has there been such a coordinated effort to achieve this level of energy savings in a three-year period,” said Tom May, NSTAR chairman, president and CEO. “Aggressive goals require aggressive action and this plan puts us on a path to making significant progress in reducing energy use and greenhouse gas emissions in Massachusetts.”

The enhanced energy efficiency plan filed by the coalition provides innovative new programs for electricity and natural gas customers across Massachusetts, while also promoting the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and spurring job creation in the clean energy sector.

“This plan represents yet another milestone in Massachusetts’ commitment to vastly expand the level of energy efficiency that will be delivered to customers throughout the Commonwealth,” said Tom King, president of National Grid in the U.S. “We must be bold in our steps to reduce energy use by expanding our energy efficiency programs, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reducing customers’ energy costs and creating much needed jobs.”

The program administrators met collaboratively to determine appropriate goals and budgets to allow for deeper and broader levels of savings at customer homes and businesses. The plan calls for a savings of close to 2.5 million MWh of electricity and roughly 45 million therms of natural gas over the three year period. The corresponding reduction in greenhouse gas emissions would be the equivalent of taking nearly 40 percent of the cars off the road in Massachusetts today. The plan also calls for the creation of 4,000 jobs in the clean energy sector in the Commonwealth.

With a cost of $1.8 billion and projected energy savings of $6 billion, the net savings to consumers will be over $4 billion for the three-year period.

The plan will be reviewed by the Energy Efficiency Advisory Council, an advisory board of energy efficiency stakeholders established by the Green Communities Act. The Council will make a recommendation to the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities with respect to the plan by July 31 of this year. Coalition members will submit individual three year plans to the DPU in October 2009 for implementation in the period from 2010 through December 2012.