The mission of the DPU is to ensure that utility consumers are provided with the most reliable service at the lowest possible cost, to protect the public safety from transportation and gas pipeline related accidents, to oversee the energy facilities siting process, and to ensure that residential ratepayers’ rights are protected.
The proposed pipeline siting process, electricity rate structures, and protecting ratepayers’ rights come under the jurisdiction of the Mass. DPU. More research needs to be completed on what is happening now.
DPU and Proposed Pipeline by TGP/Kinder Morgan: Some people who own land that TGP wants to survey are receiving a second letter from Kinder Morgan stating that TGP/Kinder Morgan are intending to file for property access for surveying though the Massachusetts Department of Utilities (DPU). TGP/Kinder Morgan can file a request to survey through the DPU. People who may get a second letter from TGP/Kinder Morgan must know their rights as citizens. At this point Nashoba Conservation Trust (see www.nashobatrust.org/pipeline/) has up-to-date information about latest TGP/Kinder Morgan letters and information about the Siting Division of DPU which includes a nine member commission. Also check out their very informative page on why this pipeline is not necessary.
DPU and Electricity Rate Structure for National Grid Customers: DPU reviews and approves the Basic Service procurements of the electric distribution companies such as National Grid. National Grid came before the DPU in 2009-10 to change distribution charges. These charges do not include the supply costs. With deregulation the Retail Electricity Industry has been restructured, and the DPU licenses competitive suppliers and electricity brokers. Getting support for restructuring electricity rates could encourage people to use less. The Department of Public Utilities is the department in state government that sets electricity rates. North Quabbin Energy worked on a proposal of incentives regarding rates and gathered regional usage data to help encourage people to engage in conservation and efficient use of electricity. Perhaps it is time to get support for this restructuring of electricity rates. Such a proposal is in accordance with statements made in DPU hearings that “there is a recent direction in energy policy towards greater promotion and reliance on energy efficiency, distributed generation, and renewable technologies as well as a commitment to address the social and economic risks associated with climate change.” (D.P.U. 09-39, November 30, 2009, Petition of National Grid – Mass. Electric Co., pursuant to G. L. c. 164, § 94, and 220 C.M.R. § 5.00 et seq., for a General Increase in Electric Rates and Approval of a Revenue Decoupling Mechanism)
News From the North Quabbin — Check out what towns are doing that relate to saving energy and also Green Communities.
Wed., May 28th at 7 p.m. at Athol Town Hall — NQ Pipeline Action Meeting
May 5th – Warwick townsfolk passed a non-binding resolution at town meeting to ban fracked gas pipelines.
April 30, 2014 — Orange Selectboard voted to deny Tennessee Gas Pipeline/Kinder Morgan access to survey town lands.