Amendment to HB 4377 would have boosted market competition
BOSTON, June 8, 2016 — The energy bill passed today by the Massachusetts House of Representatives, HB 4377, lacks an amendment that would boost competition and make carbon emission reduction commitments more cost-effective. The bill raises barriers to open competition between renewable energy sources and, without amendment, Massachusetts consumers stand to lose out on billions of dollars in savings.
The Massachusetts House of Representatives enacted H.4377, which will require the state’s utilities to solicit long-term energy contracts for 1,200 megawatts of offshore wind power in multiple procurements through the year 2027.
State Rep. Antonio Cabral, D-New Bedford, cited his city’s history as an energy powerhouse for more than a century at the time when whale oil was a primary source of energy. After the energy industry shifted to oil, coal and natural gas, he said, Massachusetts became “the end of the pipeline.”
A bill before the Massachusetts legislature could further cut carbon emissions by building on reduction goals from previous successful procurements under the Green Communities Act. By tapping into more affordable clean energy, the state’s residents can look forward to cleaner air.
The bill currently before the Massachusetts House of Representatives could make those carbon emission reduction commitments unnecessarily expensive, causing Massachusetts consumers to lose out on billions of dollars in savings.