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

The Energy Consumer's Bulletin

"Coal’s out” shouldn’t mean more gas is in.

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Thursday, June 15, 2017 @ 12:03 PM

Image courtesy of Dynegy Inc.
 

With the closure of the Brayton Point, coal generation in MA is officially a thing of the past, but will it be replaced with a 21st century solution or more of the same?

 

May 31st marked the end of an era in Massachusetts when Brayton Point, the state’s last remaining coal-fired power plant closed. Located in Somerset, the 1500 MW plant was the largest coal-fired generator in New England. Its closure was first announced in 2013 with owners citing costs associated with maintaining the decades’ old facility and coal’s inability to compete economically with natural gas.

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Tags: renewable energy, energy efficiency

This online solar comparison platform is what you’ve been looking for: Mass Solar Connect is back

Posted by Loie Hayes on Thursday, June 08, 2017 @ 10:14 AM

Mass Solar Connect is going to simplify your solar shopping. This statewide initiative, directed by the Mass Clean Energy Center (Mass CEC), pairs Mass Energy’s strong social network with the rich on-line resources of our new partner, EnergySage. (Note: Rhode Island readers can also use EnergySage, but do not have access to the Mass Solar Connect program).

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Tags: solar

It’ll take more than a hybrid: Transportation is moving towards electrification, just in time

Posted by Timmons Roberts and Larry Chretien on Tuesday, May 30, 2017 @ 08:56 PM

Our executive director, Larry Chretien, and professor Timmons Roberts wrote this article for the Brookings Institution. Read the original article here.


A few years ago, we bought a Prius hybrid (Larry), and a diesel Jetta (Timmons). We got great mileage on both, but we couldn’t imagine then how electric vehicles would begin to crack the last tough nut of confronting climate change and cleaning up urban air with genuinely appealing and low-cost options.

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Tags: electric vehicles

New study confirms benefits to strengthening the Massachusetts’ Renewable Portfolio Standard

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Thursday, May 18, 2017 @ 03:00 PM

 An Analysis of the Massachusetts Renewable Portfolio Standard, prepared by Synapse Energy Economics and Sustainable Energy Advantage, demonstrates that increasing the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard by 2% to 3% per year better positions the state to comply with the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA), while reducing costs to consumers and creating jobs.

Press Release and full report are available online.

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Tags: environmental policy, Massachusetts

PP&L 15th Annual Meeting Celebration and Reflection

Posted by Kat Burnham on Friday, May 05, 2017 @ 04:59 PM

This past week, the People’s Power & Light (PP&L) community celebrated 15 years at the annual spring meeting in Rhode Island. PP&L members, industry professional, and friends came together to enjoy an evening at the Omni Providence Hotel and to hear about the latest projects and advocacy efforts the PP&L team is leading the charge on.

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Tags: environmental policy, Rhode Island

We Need a Plan for Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pumps

Posted by Larry Chretien and Eugenia Gibbons on Monday, April 24, 2017 @ 07:12 PM

Our organization works to provide consumers with good options for their homes and we are also at the table with policymakers to encourage policies that make good economic and environmental sense. With this blog, we want to share our experience with heat pumps, particularly ductless mini-splits, and perhaps float a couple of trial balloons.

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Tags: heat pumps

Three Steps to a Better Heating System

Posted by Loie Hayes on Saturday, April 01, 2017 @ 08:03 AM

Now that spring is here, we have plenty of time to prepare for next heating season. Heating system upgrades are a great way to help you save energy and money. Though upgrading may seem like an intimidating project, you can break it down into manageable steps.

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Tags: energy efficiency, heat pumps

It’s Time to Get Charged Up: Getting Ready for Electric Vehicles and Modernizing the Grid

Posted by Larry Chretien on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 @ 10:16 AM

We’ve written several blog posts about the environmental, health, and economic benefits of electric vehicles. Understanding these benefits helps to drive consumer demand for EVs, which helps to accelerate their adoption. When it comes to fully transitioning away from gas-powered cars, consumer demand is one piece of the equation, but the build-out of charging infrastructure is the other. There are important decisions to be made in this regard.  Here I explain what is taking place and how you can weigh in to the public process.

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Tags: renewable energy, Massachusetts, electric vehicles

Trump Inspires the People’s Climate March

Posted by Larry Chretien on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 @ 11:18 AM

As a nonprofit organization, we’re not here to tell you how to vote, but we can speak out on the president’s policies. We’ve already commented on his appointees. A truly comprehensive article covering the range of his energy policies would be quite long, so for this piece, I will cover just a few of the more recent announcements of particular relevance to consumers and the environment. 

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Tags: renewable energy, community organizing, environmental policy

Mass DEP Finalizing Regulations – step in right direction, but still falling short

Posted by Eugenia T. Gibbons on Saturday, March 18, 2017 @ 03:05 PM

The Mass Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is currently finalizing regulations aimed at achieving compliance with the May 2016 decision by the state’s Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) and Executive Order 569 (EO 569) signed by Governor Baker in September. In this blog post, I provide an overview of the regulations that were proposed and what lies ahead as MA attempts to comply with its climate law.

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Tags: environmental policy

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