As Feds Move Away From Climate Change, Maine and New England Consider Stronger CO2 Caps

  “All the evidence points to the fact that RGGI’s working well, it’s been a great success since its inception,” says Peter Shattuck, director of the Clean Energy Initiative at the Acadia Center, an an environmental policy group with offices in Maine and around the northeast. “[Since RGGI’s 2009 startup] carbon pollution is down 40 percent, electricity prices are down 3 percent, and at the same time [the participating] states’ economies have grown by 25 percent,” he says. … “This is an opportunity and a necessity to fill that void. And this is not uncharted territory for RGGI itself,” Shattuck
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New Era of Natural Gas Exports Raises Concerns for Northeast

President Trump’s “Energy Week” address today is expected to express strong support for U.S. exports of natural gas, currently on the rise. For the Northeast, these exports exacerbate the risks of the region’s already-dangerous overreliance on a fossil fuel that has a history of volatile prices and will not allow the region to reach its commitments to reduce greenhouse gases. With the arrival two weeks ago in Taiwan of a liquified natural gas (LNG) tanker ship loaded with American natural gas, June has been a month marked with milestones for the nascent export industry in the United States. Preceding this
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Why raiding Connecticut’s Energy Efficiency Fund is a bad idea

Op-ed by Bill Dornbos and Taren O’Connor in the CT Mirror. As we try to address our state budget crisis, one option proposed by the Senate Republicans should be off the table: sweeping $136 million over the next two fiscal years from the utility ratepayer-funded Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund to the state’s General Fund. The Energy Efficiency Fund generates immense economic value for Connecticut. It brings billions of dollars in electricity and natural gas bill savings to residents and businesses, drives our growing clean energy economy, helps families reduce the difficult burden of high energy costs, and supplies significant state
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One Month In – Advocating for Clean Energy Policies in Connecticut

In this blog post, Acadia Center’s new Policy Advocate in Connecticut, Kerry Schlichting, shares her experience one month into her tenure at the organization. I recently joined the Hartford team in late May, after eight years in Washington, D.C., working on energy policy issues with a national perspective, and was eager to apply my experience to challenges at both the federal and state level. As a new staff member, my experience over the past month in Connecticut’s exciting and fast-paced environment has shown me the depth and breadth of Acadia Center’s work and how much is possible in the state
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NH Regulators Order DER Study; Cut Net Metering Credits

One settlement proposal came from a coalition of utilities and consumer parties (UCC), including Eversource Energy, Liberty Utilities, Unitil Energy Systems, the state Office of Consumer Advocate, the New England Ratepayers Association, Consumer Energy Alliance and Standard Power of America. The other proposal was filed the same day by a coalition of distributed generation industry advocates and environmental organizations known as the Energy Future Coalition (EFC), which included the Acadia Center, The Alliance for Solar Choice, the Conservation Law Foundation and eight other organizations and companies (docket DE 16-576).  

$12.5 Million Raid to Energy Efficiency Fund Threatens to Hurt Rhode Island Consumers and Economy

Joint release with People’s Power & Light Providence, RI – Since the House Finance Committee released its proposed state budget, energy and environmental organizations have expressed serious concerns about the dangerous precedent that the House will set if their budget is enacted. The proposed plan would raid $12.5 million from ratepayer funded, cost-effective energy efficiency programs. Groups emphasize that these are not state funds, they are rate-payer funds collected specifically to bring much-needed energy savings to all Rhode Islanders. Diverting the funds from the efficiency programs will cost Rhode Island ratepayers more money. Nonprofit organizations Acadia Center and People’s Power
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Out with the Old, In with the New: The New York DSIPs and What They Mean for the Modernized Energy Grid

The traditional system we currently use for serving the needs of energy users is quickly going out of style. The energy grid is still relying on a system that was invented almost 100 years ago (hello, the 1930s called and they want their transmission and distribution lines back!). The old classic version of the grid has served an important purpose for getting energy to consumers reliably and safely, but today’s energy fashion is more demanding. While the old grid excelled at sending energy one-way from generators to consumers, the new energy grid needs to be able to accessorize by incorporating
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Governor Raimondo Nominates Acadia Center’s Abigail Anthony to the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission

Providence, R.I. — Today, Abigail Anthony, Ph.D., will appear before the Rhode Island Senate for hearings to confirm her appointment by Governor Gina Raimondo as commissioner on the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission (RIPUC). Dr. Anthony is currently director of Acadia Center’s Rhode Island Office and its Grid Modernization Initiative. Since Dr. Anthony began at Acadia Center in 2007, she has had a leading role in advancing Rhode Island’s energy efficiency policies and grid modernization to achieve a sustainable and consumer-friendly energy system. This work will continue as she joins the Rhode Island PUC, which is working at the behest
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Forum: We need to reduce energy costs, not tax ratepayers

Op-ed by Bill Dornbos and John Harrity in the New Haven Register. The Senate Republican proposal to raid ratepayer funds for energy efficiency and renewable energy would decimate successful programs that reduce energy costs for Connecticut businesses and families. But that’s not all. Their proposal would also stifle job growth in the state’s rapidly expanding energy efficiency and solar industries, and it’s about the worst thing Connecticut could do as the harmful impacts of climate change become more apparent every day. The Senate Republicans’ revised budget would not only divert $68 million annually from Connecticut’s award-winning energy efficiency programs into
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EnergyVision 2030: What the numbers tell us about how to achieve a clean energy system

What impact will current efforts to expand clean energy markets in the Northeast have over time? Where can we do more to advance these markets? What specific increases in clean energy are needed to adequately reduce carbon pollution and meet targets for deep reductions in climate pollution? What does the data show about claims that more natural gas pipeline capacity is needed? A few years ago, Acadia Center released a framework entitled EnergyVision, which shows that a clean energy future can be achieved in the Northeast by drawing on the benefits of using clean energy to heat our homes, transport
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