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星期三, 10月 04, 2017

Boston City Council Votes to Authorize Community Choice Energy

Boston City Council Votes to Authorize Community Choice Energy
Authorization formerly begins process to develop plan, solicit bids, and receive public feedback

Boston - At the October 4th City Council meeting, the Boston City Council voted unanimously to authorize the City of Boston to adopt Community Choice Energy (CCE) with the goal of significantly ramping up the consumption of renewable energy across the city.

The order, which had been filed by Council President Michelle Wu and City Councilor Matt O’Malley, calls for an aggregation plan with a new default option that includes 5 percent more renewable energy sources than minimum state standards, as well as an opt-in option of 100 percent renewable energy.

Although the source of customers’ electricity would be greener, Boston residents would experience no disruption in their service and no change in how they experience billing. Eversource will still distribute energy to homes and businesses, and administer billing each month. In addition, as mandated for all municipal aggregation plans, Boston’s CCE plan will include an “opt-out” for any resident who wishes to remain on the Eversource basic plan.

“CCE is one of the strongest tools we have at the municipal level to reduce Boston’s carbon footprint,” said Council President Wu. “The reduction in greenhouse gas emissions that we can achieve with this program are equivalent to taking 6,400 cars off of Boston streets. In addition to helping us to meet our climate goals, this program would also be a significant investment in the growing green energy economy. Jobs in wind and solar are growing at a rate 12 times faster than the overall economy, and this will help our region continue to tap into those opportunities. It’s truly a win-win for the environment and our economy. I look forward to the public process over the next months as we work out the details.”

“I am proud of the grassroots efforts of advocates such as the Boston Climate Action Network who conducted robust education and outreach in the City of Boston on this issue,” said Councilor and Chairman of the Environment and Sustainability Committee Matt O’Malley. “It is imperative that now more than ever, cities and towns lead on environmental initiatives such as CCE. This will further our goals in combating global climate change and reducing the production of greenhouse gas.”

The Sierra Club in Massachusetts praised the passage of this authorization order. “With this bold move today the Boston City Council has made it clear Boston is a leading city in the fight against climate change," said Emily Norton, Massachusetts Director for the Sierra Club. "Community choice energy means more local jobs, better public health, stable electricity prices, and more access to clean, renewable energy for all Bostonians. We are especially grateful to Council President Wu and Councilor O’Malley for their leadership pushing CCE forward.”

The legislative vote is the first step in the state’s process for municipalities to develop an electricity aggregation plan. The order now goes to Mayor Walsh for his signature and then for the Administration to begin due diligence in analyzing prices, soliciting bids from energy vendors, and conducting a full public process