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Wednesday
Mar272019

New England governors announce commitment to regional cooperation on energy issues

On March 15, the six New England governors announced a commitment to work together to evaluate regional mechanisms to help maintain critical nuclear and clean energy facilities.

In the statement, the governors said they would work “in coordination with ISO New England and through the New England States Committee on Electricity (NESCOE), to evaluate market-based mechanisms that value the contribution that existing nuclear generation resources make to regional energy security and winter reliability.”

The governors explained that region’s electric system “has faced challenges in its ability to ensure reliable service during prolonged periods of cold winter weather,” caused in part by constrained natural gas infrastructure, and that nuclear power plants play an important role in the reliability for the region. If a nuclear plant were to retire, the region could face increased carbon emissions and winter energy security risks.

“Reliable and affordable energy is essential to ensuring that New England continues to attract investment in the region and grow our economies, while protecting our environment and quality of life,” the governors wrote. “Recognizing the importance of this task, the six New England states reaffirm our commitment to cross-border collaboration and advancement of our common goals, while working to ensure that the region’s energy system fosters continued reliability and more affordable electricity for local homes and businesses.”

They also said that, “to the extent a state’s policies prioritize clean energy resources, those states commit to work together on a mechanism or mechanisms to value the important attributes of those resources, while ensuring consumers in any one state do not fund the public policy requirements mandated by another state’s laws.”

The statement is available on the Coalition of Northeast Governors website.