Utility Rates and Energy Efficiency

By George Bachrach

In May a delegation of Corporate Council members met directly with Attorney General Martha Coakley and her senior staff to discuss the new DPU ‘decoupling’ order, designed to decouple utility rates from sales. The objective is to create economic incentive for utilities and consumers to increase energy efficiency. Ultimately rates might increase, but consumption and bills would decline. The Attorney General has been skeptical of allowing rate increases and whether this would result in increased energy efficiency.

Our delegation included Dave Newman of Millipore, Tedd Saunders of the Saunders Hotel Group and Eco-Logical Solutions, and Rick Heller of Legal Sea Foods, joined by Shanna Cleveland of the Conservation Law Foundation and Jeremy McDiarmid of Environment Northeast, as well as myself. I believe the blended voices of environmentalists and corporate consumers was compelling.

As an outgrowth of that meeting, Dave Newman and Tedd Saunders, working with Shanna Cleveland and Jeremy McDiarmid, wrote the Op Ed piece which appeared in the Boston Globe on June 14, 2009.

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