MA to cut power plant CO2 in half

BOSTON (WWLP) — The Patrick administration has announced a nine-state agreement to lower green house gas emissions at power plants by 90 million tons over the next six years.

“This is a historical announcement that we cut the greenhouse gas emissions in the nine participating states almost in half,” said Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs Secretary Richard Sullivan.  “It certainly dramatically impacts the quality of life for the better in the Pioneer Valley.”

The agreement lowers an existing “cap” on power plant emissions from 165 million tons per year to 91 million tons per year.  Massachusetts will also increase the price of “allowances” that power plants must purchase to emit greenhouse gases.  State officials say this will generate an estimated $350 million dollars in additional revenue for the state until 2020.

“We’re estimating that the average homeowner in Massachusetts will see a 39-cent increase every month on their bill,” said Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Kenneth Kimmell.

The impact on electricity bills is expected to be modest.  Power plants will have to purchase more expensive allowances, but that money will be reinvested in homes and businesses to become more energy efficient – Which will result in reduced energy use.

State officials say homeowners can invest in energy efficiency by calling your local utilities, municipal gas and electric departments, or the Mass Save program.

Copyright 2014 WWLP TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

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