New Study Finds Increased Investment in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Most Cost-Effective, Low-Risk Solution for New Hampshire2017-03-07
New Study Finds Increased Investment in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Most Cost-Effective, Low-Risk Solution for New Hampshire
University of New Hampshire Report Explores the Cost, Reliability and Risk of Energy Investments in the Granite State
The study included an in-depth examination of the cost and reliability of electrical power in New Hampshire and New England, as well as the potential risks to consider when determining next steps in securing or increasing the state’s energy supply. Key findings by researchers at the University of New Hampshire include:
- Energy Use and Economic Growth: Achieving economic growth does not necessitate increased energy use. While New England’s real state GDP grew by 9.7 percent from 2005 – 2016, during that same period the region’s energy use decreased by 9.6 percent.
- Cost: Through improved energy efficiency and energy management measures, New Hampshire has effectively adapted to high electricity prices. In addition, these measures are already reducing energy costs. Despite higher rates, the average residential electricity bill in New Hampshire is on par with the national average. Furthermore, the average commercial bill in New Hampshire is actually lower than the national average, at $529 versus $671.
- Reliability: The electrical grid in New England continues to prove itself reliable, even when faced with high energy demands during the cold winter months. In addition, researchers found evidence to support the conclusion that the current infrastructure will remain a reliable energy source for the region in the coming years and may even be underutilized.
- Risk: Research shows significant investments in infrastructure are risky, specifically when funded by New Hampshire ratepayers, while investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy have proven to be low-risk and cost-effective.
“This University of New Hampshire study makes a strong economic case that New Hampshire is on the right path with continued investments in clean, renewable energy,” said Jim O’Brien, Director of External Affairs for The Nature Conservancy in New Hampshire. “The study is sure to be a resource to policy makers as they discuss prioritizing investments in energy infrastructure to gain the highest return on investment, the lowest projected cost, and the lowest risk.”
To download the full report, visit: http://scholars.unh.edu/sustainability/6. To download the Carsey Perspectives brief, visit: http://Carsey.unh.edu/publication/perspective/nh-electricity-markets.
Support for the research was provided by The Nature Conservancy in New Hampshire and New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority (CDFA).
About The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy works in New Hampshire and around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, and using a collaborative approach that is grounded in the needs of our state and local communities, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. In New Hampshire, the Conservancy has helped protect more than 290,000 acres of forests, fields and natural areas, along with 680 miles of shoreline and river frontage. To learn more, visit www.nature.org/newhampshire or follow @nature_press on Twitter.
About the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority
CDFA is a statewide nonprofit public authority focused on maximizing the value and impact of community and economic development programs in New Hampshire through the scaling and leveraging of its financial and technical resources. CDFA’s assets under management exceed $25 million annually. Those resources include competitive deployment of grants, direct debt, and equity; highlighted by state tax credits, federal Community Development Block Grant resources, and multiple clean energy and efficiency finance products via the CDFA Clean Energy Fund.
To learn more about CDFA, its impact on New Hampshire communities and available funding resources, visit www.nhcdfa.org or call 603-226-2170.