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

Appliance Standards & Shave the Peak: Action Week for Efficiency

Posted by Kai Salem on Tuesday, July 07, 2020 @ 08:59 AM

This week, after about four months of lower-than-usual demand due to the coronavirus pandemic, demand is climbing to normal hot weather levels—enough to cause a potentially expensive and polluting peak day.

On peak days, we remind New Englanders to turn up the thermostat, turn off lights, and delay charging devices or electric vehicles—all to attempt to lower the peak electricity usage of the day and avoid turning on dirty power plants. But efficiency and conservation are important year round—in fact, as we have written many times, energy efficiency is one of the most powerful tools we have to reduce emissions and save consumers money.

What if there were a simple, free policy that would save money, water, and energy year round, all without any effort from consumers or any impact on the economy? This magical policy exists, and it’s called appliance standards! In the coming weeks, we need your help to update appliance standards in Massachusetts.

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Energy efficiency

Municipal Aggregation in Massachusetts is Being Slowed Down by State Government: Consumers & The Environment Are Paying The Price

Posted by Larry Chretien on Friday, June 26, 2020 @ 03:30 PM

In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, about 85% of the population is served by investor-owned electric utility distribution companies - Eversource, National Grid, and Unitil. By law, their customers have three options for how they would get their electricity supply. The first option is to stick with the utility’s Basic Service. The second is to select, by yourself for just yourself, a “competitive power supplier”. And the third is to receive the supply service from a community’s municipal aggregation program.

Although municipal aggregation has proven itself to be the superior option for consumers both economically and environmentally, Massachusetts government, especially the Department of Public Utilities, has failed to support the model to the extent necessary to achieve important policy goals.

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Green municipal aggregation

Massachusetts Formalizes Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050...What's the Plan for 2030?

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Tuesday, May 05, 2020 @ 10:49 AM

The Baker Administration recently issued its much-anticipated letter of determination formalizing Massachusetts’ commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050, a requirement first referenced in Baker’s 2020 state of the state address. Adjusting the GWSA to reflect scientific consensus and mandating pursuit of an ambitious long-term target is welcome news. But what does it mean for state-led clean energy and climate action in the immediate term?


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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts

Massachusetts Should Put a Stop to Deceptive Green Power Marketing

Posted by Larry Chretien on Tuesday, February 18, 2020 @ 11:41 AM

CleanChoice Energy is at it again & needs to be stopped.

Recent developments cause us to say again that Massachusetts is not doing enough to protect consumers from electricity suppliers making deceptive claims about pricing and the greenness of their electricity.

Choose Local Renewable Electricity!

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Tags: Renewable energy, Massachusetts, Electricity and the grid, Climate change

2020 Could be a Good Year for Climate Policy in Massachusetts

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Friday, January 24, 2020 @ 05:47 PM

In his State of the Commonwealth address, Governor Baker committed Massachusetts to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Then three bills touted by Senate leadership as a “next generation climate package” were released from Senate Ways and Means to be debated and voted on before month’s end. From carbon reduction goals to transit electrification and robust energy efficiency, efforts to address climate change in Massachusetts took a couple of steps forward this week. Now comes the work of turning these commitments into climate action!

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Climate change

Massachusetts Reinstates Consumer Funding for Electric Vehicles

Posted by Eugenia Gibbons & Anna Vanderspek on Monday, January 06, 2020 @ 11:15 AM

In November, we wrote about efforts to replenish Massachusetts’ state rebate for electric vehicles, which was then stalled in the legislature. Late the following month, lawmakers reached agreement on a proposed Supplemental Budget that included an infusion of much-needed dollars to bring back Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV), the only direct incentive offered by the state to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles. Now MOR-EV will benefit from an infusion of at least $27 million dollars per year for the next two years!

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation

7 Days of Gratitude - one non-profit reflects

Posted by Erin Taylor on Monday, December 02, 2019 @ 08:36 AM

With innovative clean energy developers, enthusiastic members, amazing staff and board, and awesome volunteers in the mix, our organization's story can be told in what we're grateful for.  We hope these stories will inspire you to support our work the same way they have inspired us to persevere.

Give right now

Here's a quick recap of #7DaysofGratitude (click to read each individual story):

Day 1 - Sumul Shah and Malcolm Brown, wind advocates & developers
Day 2 - Block Island Wind Farm, the first offshore wind farm in the country
Day 3 - John & Claire Fitzmaurice, Joel Golden, and all our other Electric Car Ambassadors
Day 4 - Conservation Law Foundation, our amazing partners
Day 5 - Our hardworking staff and board
Day 6 - Dedicated community organizers working on Green Municipal Aggregation
Day 7 - Ricard Torres Mateluna and Christine Hatch, Heating Oil members who've become as energy efficient as they can!

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more #7DaysofGratitude.

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Tags: Renewable energy, Massachusetts, Energy efficiency, Rhode Island

Funding for Electric Vehicles stalled at the Massachusetts State House. Call Your Legislators!

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Tuesday, November 26, 2019 @ 04:05 PM

November 20th marked the end of formal session in Year 1 of Massachusetts’ two-year legislative cycle. The remaining weeks of 2019 are considered “informal session,” during which bills may still be considered and moved, but formal activities not completed by last Thursday are largely on hold until the legislature formally reconvenes in the new year. A proposal to replenish consumer rebates for EVs is included in the supplemental budget (H.4132/S.2418) currently stalled at the State House. 

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation

Something for Everyone Who Understands the Climate Crisis

Posted by Larry Chretien on Tuesday, November 12, 2019 @ 07:56 AM

If you’re motivated to learn more about what you can do about the climate crisis as a consumer and a citizen, and what lots of smart, committed activists are doing – then join us at our Fall Meeting, November 19th. This year, we're thrilled to welcome Kelsey Wirth, co-founder of Mothers Out Front, as our featured speaker.

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Tags: Massachusetts, Our programs, Climate change

Massachusetts' Electric Car Rebate is Winding Down

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Friday, June 28, 2019 @ 04:00 PM

Earlier this week, officials from the Baker administration announced plans to extend Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV) through September 2019 when, absent new funding, the program will come to an end. Eliminating this popular incentive now moves Massachusetts in the wrong direction and will make meeting our ZEV goals (300,000 EVs by 2025) that much more challenging. 

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Tags: Energy policy & advocacy, Massachusetts, Electric vehicles/Transportation