Acton Power Choice significantly increases renewable energy content as new program prices go into effect in September
The Acton Power Choice program will increase the amount of voluntary renewable energy that is automatically provided to most program participants — from 10% to 40% — beginning in September. This change is part of the town’s strategy to decrease greenhouse gas emissions associated with Acton’s energy use and to provide residents and businesses with a Town-administered program that reduces volatility in energy prices, offers protection in the marketplace, and keeps energy dollars in our region. This increase in renewable content not only brings Acton Power Choice (APC) in line with some of the most ambitious “green” electricity aggregation programs in the state, but also, advances progress on the goal set out in the Climate Emergency Declaration passed at Town Meeting in September 2020: bringing “net Town-wide carbon emissions to zero as quickly as possible, with a target date of 2030.”
This change will come as Acton’s contract with its current electricity supplier, Constellation NewEnergy, comes to an end, and a contract with a new electricity supplier, NextEra Energy Services, begins. As the new contract goes into effect, all Acton Power Choice prices will change.
Acton Power Choice participants have together saved more than $3.9 million since the program launched in 2017. As part of that the current long-term (three-year) electricity supply contract that the Town signed with Constellation in 2019 has kept program prices low in spite of the recent and rapid rise of electricity prices in the marketplace. With the new electricity supply contract, program prices will move to market levels, which means Acton Power Choice prices will rise. However, the new prices will be fixed for 15 months. If electricity supply prices continue to rise during that time, Acton Power Choice prices will not. In fact, the rationale for a 15-month contract (rather than a longer one) is to ensure that the program is not locked into these prices in the event that energy prices stabilize at lower rates and this erratic pricing period ends.
Specific program changes will be as follows:
- APC Standard, the auto-enrollment program offering, currently provides an additional 10% of renewable electricity (above the minimum required by state statute, known as the Renewable Portfolio Standards, or RPS) from renewable energy projects in the Northeast. When the new contract with NextEra Energy Services takes effect in September, the amount of additional renewable electricity from projects in the Northeast will quadruple, from 10% to 40%. At the same time, the price for APC Standard will change to 19.286 cents/kWh. Most program participants are enrolled in APC Standard.
- APC Green, an option that is available on request, will continue to provide 100% renewably generated electricity, all from renewable energy projects in the Northeast (100% Massachusetts Class 1 RECs). The APC Green price will change to 20.750 cents/kWh.
- APC Basic, an option that is available on request, includes no additional renewable energy above the minimum required by the RPS. The APC Basic price will change to 17.766 cents/kWh. For comparison, Eversource’s current Basic Service prices are 17.871 cents/kWh for residential accounts, 17.827 cents/kWh for small business accounts, and 21.883 cents/kWh for large business accounts.
Acton Power Choice prices will be fixed until December 2023, whereas Eversource’s Basic Service price will change every six months for residential and commercial customers, and every three months for industrial customers. The new contract will provide a long-term, stable price, but because future Eversource prices are not known, savings compared to Eversource’s Basic Service price cannot be guaranteed.
Current participants in Acton Power Choice will be automatically enrolled in the new, NextEra Energy Services contract with their September meter read and do not need to take any action. Participants will first see the new prices on their October 2022 Eversource electricity bills, and will see the electricity supplier listed on the bill change to “NES – Acton Power Choice.” APC prices impact only the supply portion of participants’ Eversource electricity bills; Eversource’s delivery charges are not impacted by participation in Acton Power Choice.
Program participants retain the right to make changes at any time in the future with no fee or penalty. Participants who wish to change their enrollment before the new pricing goes into effect, such as moving from one program option to another or opting out of the program, must submit that change request no later than September 21. Enrollment change requests can be submitted online at ActonPowerChoice.com or by calling Acton Power Choice customer support with the Town’s program consultants at 1-844-379-9933.
Tax-exempt account holders in Acton Power Choice are reminded that they must submit their tax-exemption documentation to NextEra Energy Services if they wish to retain tax-exempt status in the program. Information about how to do that is available at ActonPowerChoice.com
About Acton Power Choice
Acton Power Choice is a group electricity purchasing program provided by the Town of Acton to the community. Through the program, the town chooses an electricity supplier for the community and determines the price for, and the amount of renewable energy in, the community’s electricity supply. The program provides a town-vetted alternative to Eversource’s Basic Service and to other electricity supply offers in the marketplace. New electricity accounts in Acton are automatically enrolled in Acton Power Choice Standard. The Town of Acton does not receive any financial compensation from the program. All program participants have the right to opt out at any time.
Because of the program’s commitment to renewable electricity, Acton Power Choice participants have helped to reduce the town’s carbon emissions by more than 24 million pounds of CO2
since the program launched in September 2017. This is equivalent to eliminating the greenhouse gas emissions emitted by passenger cars driving more than 27 million miles, or avoiding the emissions from the burning of 25,204 barrels of oil!
Additional information is available at ActonPowerChoice.com. Customer support is available from the Town’s program consultants via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
or by phone at 1-844-379-9933. To learn more about the Town’s climate action planning efforts, visit https://bit.ly/ActonCAP2022
, or contact the Sustainability Office at email@example.com
or by phone at 978-929-6515.