Patrick Administration Announces Results of Three-Year Statewide Energy Efficiency Plans
Nation-leading investments significantly reduce energy use, greenhouse gas emissions
BOSTON -- December 23, 2013 – Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Rick Sullivan today announced that energy efficiency improvements by homeowners, businesses and government agencies across the Commonwealth from 2010-2012 resulted in significant electric, natural gas and greenhouse gas emission reductions.
In total, the Commonwealth’s three-year statewide energy efficiency plans delivered 2,390 gigawatt hours, 49 million therms, and nearly 1.4 million metric tons of energy savings and greenhouse gas reductions. These reductions are equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of over 314,000 homes, the natural gas usage of 52,000 homes and, in greenhouse gas reduction terms, the equivalent of taking nearly 290,000 cars off the road. The plans were authorized by the Green Communities Act of 2008 (GCA) and approved by the Department of Public Utilities in January 2010.
In 2012, the final year of the efficiency plans, savings were equivalent to the annual electricity usage of nearly 129,000 homes, the annual natural gas usage of almost 24,000 homes and the annual reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from more than 123,000 cars.
“This year’s report shows that more than 14,000 small businesses and 6,000 large businesses engaged in energy efficiency efforts in 2012, proving once again that efficiency is a win-win with economic and environmental benefits alike,” said Secretary Sullivan. “By implementing these three-year plans, the Patrick Administration is reducing greenhouse gas emissions, cutting energy use and creating jobs.”
The three-year plan results are a significant factor in Massachusetts earning the No. 1 ranking in the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy’s (ACEEE) State Energy Efficiency Scorecard in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Each year ACEEE has credited the Commonwealth’s “continued commitment to energy efficiency under its Green Communities Act of 2008” for the ranking.
Under the plans, Massachusetts committed to one of the most ambitious energy efficiency efforts in the nation – investing more in energy efficiency per capita than any other state. The 2013-2015 plans, underway now, are equally ambitious, projected to deliver nearly $9 billion in benefits from an investment of $2.2 billion. The electric savings are projected to reduce retail sales of electricity by 2.6 percent in 2015. These results are significant enough to be included in long term load forecasting by the Independent System Operator New England (ISO-NE), the organization responsible for determining New England’s grid reliability.
“Massachusetts’ energy efficiency programs are delivering nation leading economic and environmental benefits to residents and businesses throughout the Commonwealth” said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “I thank the EEAC members, the utilities and energy efficiency service providers that deliver the Mass Save® programs for continuing to push the envelope in making energy efficiency our first fuel.”
The results are outlined in a report of the Massachusetts Energy Efficiency Advisory Council (EEAC) filed with the Legislature, 2012 Report of the Massachusetts EEAC file size 1MB . The EEAC is a stakeholder body established by the GCA to guide the development of comprehensive, integrated, statewide energy efficiency plans and monitor their implementation.
"Massachusetts has proven itself to be a leader on ambitious energy efficiency policies and programs, and these results demonstrate that we are continuing to help reduce consumption, high energy costs, and greenhouse gas emissions,” said Attorney General Martha Coakley. “These energy efficiency programs have been a cost-effective use of ratepayer money and we should continue our efforts to expand long term energy efficiency investments to improve the productivity of the Massachusetts economy by developing the competitive markets necessary to deliver those investments.”
"Investing in energy efficiency is good for the economy and the environment,” said Senator Ben Downing. “These investments are nation leading and have fueled job creation, while keeping our air and water cleaner, and reducing our impact on climate change. I look forward to these benefits flowing directly to families, small businesses and our cities and towns"
“The exciting, sustained commitment Massachusetts has made to this cost-effective, clean energy resource is vital for the Commonwealth’s economic and environmental future,” said Christina Dietrich, ENE policy analyst and EEAC member. “This report reflects the hard work and strong commitment of stakeholders that is required to reach nation-leading levels of savings. The investments will provide billions of dollars in consumer benefits, clean our air, improve our economic productivity and help the Commonwealth meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals.”
"Year after year, Massachusetts’ energy efficiency programs continue to expand upon previous years’ successes and add new, innovative opportunities," said Senior Vice President of Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) Robert Rio. "These programs provide continued savings for businesses and homeowners, and real benefits for our environment.”
“We’re proud of the many significant accomplishments of our energy efficiency program administrators across Massachusetts,” said Penni Conner, senior vice president and chief customer officer at Northeast Utilities. “We look forward to continued success in the coming years as together we work with state officials and our numerous stakeholders to develop innovative, successful programs tailored to meet our customers’ needs.”
"We are proud to work hand-in-hand with all of the communities we serve to help improve energy efficiency across the Commonwealth," said Marcy Reed, president of National Grid in Massachusetts. "National Grid offers a number of energy efficiency programs that empower residential and business customers to reduce energy costs and do their part to promote a greener environment. We congratulate Massachusetts on its success and leadership, and we look forward to playing an important role in the state's energy efficiency efforts for years to come."
The Global Warming Solutions Act, signed by Governor Patrick in 2008, made the Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 a requirement. The plan mandates a gradual GHG emissions reduction and a scheduling of emissions goals that is designed to spur innovation and promote research and development in the clean energy industry. The Commonwealth has set a 2020 reduction target of 25 percent below 1990 levels, and released the plan outlining a portfolio of policies and programs to meet the goal.
The Patrick Administration’s aggressive clean energy initiatives have made Massachusetts a leader in energy efficiency, renewable energy and emissions reductions. This year, Governor Patrick set a new solar goal after reaching the previous goal of 250 megawatts four years early. The Commonwealth now aims to install 1,600 megawatts of solar capacity by 2020. The clean energy revolution is yielding economic benefits as well, with 11.8 percent job growth in the last year and 24 percent growth in the last two years; nearly 80,000 people are employed in the clean tech industry in Massachusetts.