The High Cost of Green Energy Programmes in Massachusetts

A new analysis shows that the state's green energy policies will cost Massachusetts ratepayers more than $9.8 billion over the next decade. These costs will be in addition to the market prices for energy, already among the highest in the nation, says the Beacon Hill Institute.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts imposes 25 unique green energy mandates and programmes upon consumers and businesses. Focusing on only the impacts to ratepayers, not taxpayers, Beacon Hill examined the costs of 11 of those 25 mandates and programmes:

  • By 2020 the green energy policies for renewable energy and energy efficiency will raise electricity rates over 2.6 cents per kilowatt hour.

  • These policies will cost an average household $1,582.

  • The cost to an average commercial business will be $15,559 and $141,255 to an average industrial business.

  • From 2010 through 2020 the total cost of the green energy mandates, programmes and incentives will be $9.8 billion (in 2010 dollars).

    In addition, the Taxpayers Against Cape Wind group says residents in nearly 170 communities will be hit by substantial rate increases:

  • The starting rate will charge National Grid taxpayers 19.4 cents per kilowatt hour.

  • By 2028, National Grid communities can expect to be paying upwards of 30 cents per kilowatt hour for electricity.

    Beacon Hill's analysis also shows that Massachusetts imposes more green energy mandates on its business and homeowner communities than seven designated competitor states.

    Source: Paul Bachman, Benjamin Powell, David Tuerck, Rick Weber, Going Green with Energy in Massachusetts: Costly Mandates Will Hit Consumers, Business, Beacon Hill Institute, October 2010. Also, Taxpayers Against Cape Wind Say Nearly 170 Communities Across Massachusetts Expected To Feel Economic Impact From Cape Wind Project,, October 26, 2010.

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    First published by the National Center for Policy Analysis, United States

    FMF Policy Bulletin/ 09 November 2010
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