Massachusetts 3-Year Energy Efficiency Plans
For seven years running, Massachusetts has been ranked number one in the nation for energy efficiency by the American Council for an Energy Efficiency Economy (ACEEE). This top ranking is largely due to the state’s nation-leading, utility energy efficiency programs. Each year these programs produce incremental savings equivalent to more than 3% of statewide electricity sales and 1% of statewide natural gas sales.
With annual budgets of over $800 million, these programs are creating significant business opportunities for energy efficiency companies. The programs fund the purchase and installation of energy efficient equipment, energy audits, engineering studies, and other energy efficiency services. They help energy efficiency companies to grow and put energy professionals to work.
Massachusetts energy efficiency programs are governed by three-year plans, which must be approved by state regulators. The plans establish the savings goals, budgets, program priorities, and program designs. Each plan is a blueprint for three years and for a total of nearly $2 billion in energy efficiency spending.
The plan for the next three-year period, 2019 – 2021, is being developed and reviewed by regulators in 2018. NEEC is participating actively in this regulatory process, urging regulators to maintain the state’s ambitious energy savings goals and to align program spending in ways that will maximize the industry’s growth. NEEC submits written comments, presents testimony from industry leaders, and participates directly in decision making through its representative on the state Energy Efficiency Advisory Council. NEEC gives the industry a voice in these critical regulatory decisions.
Legislation to Expand Energy Efficiency
Ten years ago, the Massachusetts legislature enacted the Green Communities Act, which established the framework for energy efficiency in Massachusetts. In 2018, the legislature is considering a bill to update that framework by expanding the energy efficiency services available to customers. House Bill No. 1724, An Act Relative to Energy Efficiency, would allow the efficiency programs to offer a wider range of technologies, including energy storage, and would allow the programs to support the best energy solutions for customers, regardless of fuel type. The bill would also require that economic development benefits be considered in program design and evaluation.
Fact Sheet for House Bill 1724.