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

Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek

Recent Posts

The Latest IPCC Report & What It Means for Massachusetts & Rhode Island

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Saturday, March 25, 2023 @ 09:25 AM

On Monday, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)released its most recent report, whichstatesin no uncertain terms that we need to increase the pace of greenhouse gas emissions reductions. To avoid the worst effects of climate change, the IPCC report said we must reduce carbon emissions by two thirds by 2035.With the release of the report, United NationsSecretary General António Guterres called on developed nations to achieve net-zero emissions by as close to 2040 as possible, rather than the 2050 date that has been the standard – and the date around which Massachusetts and Rhode Island climate policy has developed. What does this latest international call for urgency and speed mean for our work here in Massachusetts and Rhode Island?

Read More

Tags: Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

How on Earth will the grid handle all these heat pumps & EVs?

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Wednesday, March 08, 2023 @ 12:05 PM

In the course of our work promoting the electrification of transportation and heating, we are often asked how the grid is going to hold up with the increased demand caused by heat pumps and electric vehicles (EVs). Recently, one of our favorite state legislators said he gets that question frequently too. So, here’s our response.

Read More

Tags: Electricity and the grid, Phasing out fossil fuels

Seriously, hydrogen is not for heating homes & businesses

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Friday, December 02, 2022 @ 09:14 AM

A few weeks ago, we wrote a blog explaining why renewable natural gas (RNG) and hydrogen should not be mixed in with natural gas (methane) and sent through pipes to heat buildings. That blog focused on RNG – how there’s not enough to go around, that we don’t really know how much it will cost, and that getting to net-zero carbon emissions means phasing out combustion in all its forms. This blog will focus on the other fuel some stakeholders are pushing: hydrogen.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Home heating

Take Action on Massachusetts’ 2050 Climate Plan

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Saturday, October 15, 2022 @ 10:00 AM

Once again, Massachusetts is working on a clean energy and climate plan – this time for 2050 – and your input is needed by October 21.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Climate change, Action Alert

We Like the Massachusetts Climate Bill. The Governor Must Sign It.

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Friday, July 22, 2022 @ 07:00 AM

On Thursday, the Massachusetts House and Senate both passed a major new climate bill, An Act Driving Clean Energy and Offshore Wind. The legislation now goes to Governor Baker for signature. The bill is basically what we expected: a combination of the House’s emphasis on offshore wind, the Senate’s emphasis on electric transportation, and some new policies in other areas. Overall, we are very pleased with the 96-page bill. Here are our views on some of the key provisions – and what you can do to get this over the finish line. 

Read More

Tags: Renewable energy, Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation, Electricity and the grid, Energy efficiency, Home heating, Climate change

Final Massachusetts Clean Energy & Climate Plan is Out. Now What?

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Thursday, July 14, 2022 @ 12:56 PM

On June 30, 2022, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) released the final draft of the Clean Energy and Climate Plan (CECP) for 2025 and 2030. This document outlines the key strategies the Commonwealth will use to reach the statutorily-required 50% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under 1990 levels by 2030. We have been advocating for a strong CECP since the first version was published at the very end of 2020. It includes the "how" on reducing emissions from buildings, transportation, and electric power.

Here’s our take on this final version, and what advocacy is needed moving forward.

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts

The Transportation Climate Initiative is on life support. Do states have better ideas for reducing transportation emissions?

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Thursday, November 18, 2021 @ 08:47 PM

Earlier this week, we learned that Connecticut Governor Lamont withdrew his support for the regional Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI). When that news hit, we knew it was going to put pressure on the governors of Massachusetts and Rhode Island to follow suit. On Thursday, a spokesman for Governor Charlie Baker said that Massachusetts will not move forward with TCI because there is no longer a multi-state commitment. We haven’t yet heard from Rhode Island Governor McKee, but we anticipate a similar statement.   

Read More

Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Electric vehicles/Transportation

The Public Gets It: We Have to Phase Out Gas-Powered Cars

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Tuesday, November 16, 2021 @ 09:03 AM

There’s so much climate-related news right now that it’s hard to keep up: from the negotiations in Glasgow to the details of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill and the still-to-be-determined future of the Build Back Better Act. But here’s one piece of good news you don’t want to miss: a recent poll demonstrates that the public gets it. We have to phase out gas-powered cars.

Read More

Tags: Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation, Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

Our enemies are gasoline and the internal combustion engine

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Tuesday, May 25, 2021 @ 12:13 PM

From 1982 to 2016, Green Energy Consumers Alliance focused our attention on building energy for homes and businesses. But in 2016, alarmed at the rise in greenhouse gas emissions from cars, we became aware of the potential of vehicle electrification as a measure to reduce those emissions. Since we are an alliance of consumers and, at our core, connect energy users to cleaner options through our program offeringswe looked outside the house and began our Drive Green program in order to educate people about electric vehicles (EVs) and to give them a chance to get one at a more affordable price.

Read More

Tags: Electric vehicles/Transportation, Climate change, Phasing out fossil fuels

Good things happen when you smart charge your electric car.

Posted by Larry Chretien & Anna Vanderspek on Monday, July 15, 2019 @ 05:05 PM

It’s imperative that we all switch from internal combustion engines to electric cars for several compelling reasons. The most important is that reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions enough to save the planet depends upon it. But what’s particularly exciting is: we can magnify the benefits of EVs by managing when we charge them.

Read More

Tags: Electric vehicles/Transportation