The Energy Consumer's Bulletin- a New England energy news blog

Larry Chretien

Executive Director of Mass Energy and People's Power & Light.

Recent Posts

Another Great Year for Climate Legislation in Massachusetts? Apparently. Let’s Hope.

Posted by Larry Chretien on Wednesday, April 27, 2022 @ 12:24 PM

In 2021, Governor Baker signed comprehensive climate legislation called An Act Creating a Next Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy. That law set a more aggressive timeline for mandatory emissions reductions (50% by 2030, net-zero, and 85% by 2050), strengthened the definition of “environmental justice communities”, and will definitely impact the state. But while the ink is barely dry, it certainly appears that the House and Senate are moving towards yet another significant climate bill to send to the governor sometime in the next two to three months.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Climate change

Gas Tax Holidays: A Really Bad Idea

Posted by Larry Chretien on Thursday, March 10, 2022 @ 01:28 PM

Some politicians in Massachusetts and Rhode Island are calling on their state governments to reduce or eliminate the gas tax in response to rising prices since Russia invaded Ukraine a couple weeks ago. That’s an awful idea and political pandering at its worst.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation, Rhode Island, Climate change

Rhode Island Bill Creates Roadmap to Advance Future of Electric Transportation

Posted by Larry Chretien on Wednesday, March 09, 2022 @ 10:15 AM

Last week, Rhode Island legislators Sen. Alana DiMario and Rep. Terri Cortvriend introduced bills setting a target of 100% of new cars registered being electric vehicles by 2030. The legislation (H. 7653 and S. 2448) creates a process to plan for the infrastructure and other changes involving cars, trucks, and public transportation in order to meet the 2030 target, which is critical for the state to meet its 2030 greenhouse gas emissions reductions under the Act on Climate. Following Rhode Island’s withdrawal from the Transportation and Climate Initiative, the bill represents a new approach to tackling pollution from transportation, the region’s largest source of emissions.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Electric vehicles/Transportation, Rhode Island, Phasing out fossil fuels

And so it goes – the relationship between fossil fuel dependence and war continues

Posted by Larry Chretien on Tuesday, February 22, 2022 @ 05:24 PM

I’m old enough to have been in junior high school when Arab members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) imposed an embargo against the United States in retaliation for U.S. support of Israel in the 1973 Arab-Israeli War. That was the first of two serious “oil shocks” to the economy in that decade. 

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

Cracking the Code on Building Sector Emissions

Posted by Larry Chretien on Monday, February 14, 2022 @ 03:00 PM

On February 8, Massachusetts energy officials proposed regulations that would require new residential and commercial buildings to be significantly more energy efficient. The proposal would establish a new energy code statewide, in addition to a more rigorous “stretch code” that cities and towns can adopt.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Energy efficiency, Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

This Winter Adds to the Evidence: We’re Slow Walking on Climate Action

Posted by Larry Chretien on Tuesday, February 01, 2022 @ 02:29 PM

For those of us in the climate action movement, it’s tiring to ask the question, “What will it take to get policymakers to see the climate crisis as something deserving big, rapid changes in how we produce and consume energy?” Evidently, it’s not forest fires, melting glaciers, heat waves, or hurricanes. This winter, the climate crisis, and our fossil fuel addiction are leading to other consequences: expensive electricity and lots of oil burning. And yes, we’re still not seeing nearly enough action.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Electricity and the grid, Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

An open letter to the Massachusetts Clean Heat Commission

Posted by Larry Chretien on Thursday, January 20, 2022 @ 09:15 AM


As the Boston Globe recently reported, the Baker administration has appointed a “Clean Heat Commission” (CHC) charged with making recommendations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from the building sector. To the appointees, we humbly ask that you consider this open letter. 

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Phasing out fossil fuels

In Memory of Malcolm Brown, New England's first wind power hero (and mine, too)

Posted by Larry Chretien on Friday, December 17, 2021 @ 11:41 AM

If you know Green Energy Consumers Alliance, you know we are really into wind power.  That’s because wind power is abundant and the lowest cost, zero-emission energy available.  Today, the talk is all about huge off-shore wind farms. But to get to this point, things had to start in the beautiful coastal town of Hull, Massachusetts.  And with an amazing character named Malcolm Brown.  Sadly, Malcolm passed away recently. But he remains in my memory and if you’re into wind power, please read on.

Read More

Sparky’s Electrifying Tale – a great children’s book you should check out for the holidays

Posted by Larry Chretien on Monday, December 13, 2021 @ 10:07 AM

Green Energy Consumers Alliance has been working closely with our friends on the West Coast, a nonprofit called Coltura, on policies to phase out gasoline.  That’s serious work for grownups.  But Coltura has also produced a great new children’s book, “Sparky’s Electrifying Tale”.

Read More

Tags: Electric vehicles/Transportation

Put on a Sweater and Unplug the Second Fridge – Energy this Winter is Going to Be Expensive

Posted by Larry Chretien on Monday, October 18, 2021 @ 05:58 PM

Oil and natural gas prices are on the rise globally in a big way and that means electricity and heating fuel rates will go up too.  When you add it all up, this is going to be an expensive winter. 

Read More

Tags: Electricity and the grid, Home heating