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National Grid proposes lower rates for warmer months

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WESTFORD — Customers of Westford’s Power Options Program could see some savings on their electric bill this summer. 

The Power Options Program is an electricity supply program organized by the Town of Westford to provide residents and businesses with an alternative for their electrical service. The power aggregation program began in 2016 and was renewed for an additional 35 months in Jan. 1, 2021. The current contract will expire in Dec. 31, 2023.

National Grid has proposed reducing the supply rate for customers to $0.11491 cents per kilowatt-hour since it peaked at $0.14821 cents per kilowatt-hour last November. This change marks an approximate 22% reduction in supply costs. 

Westford’s program relies on National Grid for electrical delivery and billing while providing supply through Constellation Energy. The program aims to reduce prices while providing renewable energy to customers. 

Westford’s supply program consists of four plans, with the cheapest Standard plan meeting current Renewable Energy Certificate standards. More expensive plans exceed this requirement, with the Green plan including an additional 10% renewable energy certificates above the state’s minimum of 20%, giving a customer 30% of their energy from renewables. The Silver plan including an additional 50% certificates above the state minimum, meaning 70% of a customer’s usage is from Renewable Energy Certificates. The Gold plan, the most expensive plan available, matches a customer’s entire electrical usage with certificates, including the state minimum, meaning 120% of a customer’s usage is from Renewable Energy Certificates. 

For example, customers under Westford’s standard POP Green plan pay $0.10793 cents per kilowatt-hour. These customers receive an additional 10% of their energy usage through renewable facilities within New England. Even customers under the town’s Gold plan pay $0.13965 cents per kilowatt-hour, approximately 5.5% less than National Grid’s standard plan, while offsetting their entire energy usage with renewable energy.

If approved, the proposed change will take effect on May 1, 2022 and will remain in effect until National Grid’s next rate adjustment on Nov. 1, 2022. The Power Options Program did not announce a rate adjustment at the time of reporting. 

Ben Domaingue
Ben Domaingue has previously worked at newspapers in New Hampshire and is a News Reporter covering Westford. He’s passionate about community journalism, photography and hiking.