For Immediate Release - March 05, 2010

Patrick-Murray Administration Announces April 22 Launch of Home Appliance Rebate Program

With $6.2 million in federal stimulus funding, "Mass Save Great Appliance Exchange" will reward consumers who trade in energy "clunker" appliances for new, super-efficient models

BOSTON - March 5, 2010 - As part of the Patrick-Murray Administration's Massachusetts Recovery Plan to secure the state's economic future, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Ian Bowles today announced that a federal stimulus-funded energy efficient appliance rebate program will launch in the Commonwealth next month. The "Mass Save Great Appliance Exchange" will begin on April 22, marking the 40 th anniversary of Earth Day.

"The Mass Save Great Appliance Exchange is the latest example of the Commonwealth's use of federal Recovery dollars to lower household energy costs, cut energy waste and reduce greenhouse gas emissions," said Governor Deval Patrick. "I am delighted that launching this program will be part of our celebration of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day."

"Through the assistance and support of federal stimulus funds, we encourage our residents to use this state rebate program as a resource to help them cut costs and save money for their household needs while also promoting energy efficiency and protecting the environment," said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) allocated $6.2 million to Massachusetts to administer an Energy Efficient Appliance Rebate Program designed to spur significant household energy savings by taking high energy consuming home appliances out of commission and replacing them with qualified ENERGY STAR models.

"Swapping electricity-guzzling refrigerators, freezers, clothes washers and dishwashers for super-efficient new ones will cut energy use across the state, saving consumers money on monthly utility bills for years to come, while protecting our environment through lower energy use," said Secretary Bowles.

EEA's Department of Energy Resources (DOER) estimates that 27,000 inefficient appliances will be taken out of service as a result of the program, meaning Massachusetts residents will use 2.6 million fewer kilowatt hours of electricity annually - the annual equivalent of eliminating 4.3 million pounds of carbon dioxide and enough energy to power 340 households for one year. This program is being administered by the DOER in partnership with retailers, utilities and energy efficiency service providers.

"This program is a benefit to both consumers and the environment," said Barbara Anthony, the Undersecretary of the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation. "Buying a big household appliance is a big financial decision for families, especially during our economic recovery. This program provides a great incentive for consumers to make that purchase, and do it in a positive way for the environment."

Initial instructions for taking part in the Massachusetts program - dubbed the "Mass Save Great Appliance Exchange" - are now posted at www.masssave.com/gax. By visiting the site, consumers can obtain an overview of the rebate process. In coming weeks, the site will include a list of refrigerator, dishwasher, clothes washer and freezer models that will be eligible for the rebate in April. The program will continue as long as rebate supplies last, on a "first come, first served" basis.

To ensure that the process is managed fairly, consumers will be required to make an advance reservation via www.masssave.com/gax. Eligible consumers will also be required to turn in their inefficient appliances. Returned appliances must be working when exchanged for more efficient models, and, once returned, will be taken out of service. Only Massachusetts residents will be eligible for these rebates.

A final, searchable list of eligible appliance models and other details of the Mass Save Great Appliance Exchange, including rebate amounts for each appliance type and how to participate, will be posted on www.masssave.com/gax on March 22.

"These rebates are the proverbial offer you can't refuse. They're incentives that will help consumers across Massachusetts save money, make their homes energy efficient, and protect our environment. This is exactly the kind of investment we intended when we passed the Recovery Act and the 40 th Anniversary of Earth Day is the perfect time to start such an initiative," said Senator John Kerry.

"Massachusetts families continue to be squeezed by rising medical, education and energy costs. This rebate program puts federal Recovery Act funds to use assisting households in purchasing efficient every-day appliances that will reduce energy costs for families while also reducing our dependence on foreign energy sources and protecting our environment. I applaud the Commonwealth's kick-off of this program on Earth Day," said Congressman John F. Tierney.

"This federal recovery-funded program comes on the heels of our recent announcement of unprecedented energy efficiency investments under the Green Communities Act that make Massachusetts the national leader in commitment to energy efficiency and will result in $6 billion in savings to ratepayers over the next three years," DOER Commissioner Phil Giudice said. "Taken together, all of these efforts move us closer to meeting Governor Patrick's nation-leading goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, save on energy costs and build our clean energy economy."

Investment in energy efficiency is a critical component of Governor Patrick's Massachusetts Recovery Plan, which combines state, federal and, where possible, private efforts to provide immediate and long-term relief and position the Commonwealth for recovery in the following ways:

  • Deliver immediate relief by investing in the road, bridge and rail projects that put people to work today and providing safety net services that sustain people who are especially vulnerable during an economic crisis;
  • Build a better tomorrow through education and infrastructure investments that strengthen our economic competitiveness, prepare workers for the jobs of the future, and support clean energy, broadband, and technology projects that cut costs while growing the economy; and

Reform state government by eliminating the pension and ethics loopholes that discredit the work of government and revitalize the transportation networks that have suffered from decades of neglect and inaction.