DOER Calls For Clean Energy Provisions As Condition Of Proposed Utilities Merger

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The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) filed a brief with the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) Wednesday regarding the proposed NSTAR – Northeast Utilities merger case.

The brief renews DOER's motion to stay the proceeding pending better information about how the merger would meet the DPU's new ‘net benefit’ standard of review with regard to impacts on ratepayers and the commonwealth's greenhouse gas emissions and clean energy goals.

The brief further states that if DPU is inclined to approve the merger, it should include within its order several conditions to significantly advance the Patrick-Murray administration's renewable energy and energy efficiency goals.

DOER is urging the DPU to require NSTAR, Western Massachusetts Electric Company (WMECO) and Northeast Utilities (WMECO's parent company) ‘to demonstrate concrete, verifiable and enforceable reductions in their reasonably foreseeable climate impact.’

Among the merger conditions requested by the DOER is a requirement that NSTAR enter into a 15-year contract for new Massachusetts renewable portfolio standard class I wind energy generation resources equal to 2% of NSTAR's electric load as of December 2010 – or approximately 129 MW.

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