February 2, 2010

State Sets New Energy Standards

The NY Times reports

Massachusetts state officials announced on Friday new energy efficiency standards for utilities that aim to be the most ambitious in the nation. Consumers will eventually reap $6 billion in savings on their utility bills from the efficiency plan, even after accounting for the added fees, the officials say.
The plan calls for a statewide reduction of 2.4 percent in electricity use and 1.15 percent in natural gas use annually for three years. The reductions were mandated by the Green Communities Act, passed by the state Legislature in 2008. But the bill did not specify the reduction goals or how they were to be reached. The state Department of Public Utilities approved the plan late Thursday.
"The Green Communities Act established energy efficiency as the Commonwealth's 'first fuel' — what we look to first to power our homes and our economy," Ian Bowles, the state's secretary for energy and environmental affairs, said in a written statement. "We are off and running, pulling out all the stops to cut energy waste, save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in buildings across Massachusetts."

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