NH energy leaders share concerns about high energy costs

Energy leaders from across New Hampshire came together Monday for an energy summit as concerns grow about high energy prices as colder weather nears.Experts at the 10th annual New Hampshire Energy Summit predicted an expensive winter for Granite Staters, but they said it all depends on how cold it actually gets. “It’s the most challenging time of the year for the electric grid,” said Eric Johnson, of ISO New England, the organization that oversees the region’s electrical grid. Johnson said the cold weather presents some fuel challenges for the grid, and high prices for natural gas mean high prices for electricity. He advised home and business owners to look into energy-efficient strategies.”I would work with the local electric utility company, the distribution company,” he said. “They have programs to help people do audits of their facilities, and they have programs that might help them with things like electrification of different lighting technologies. So, if you can use more efficient lighting, you can bring down your electricity demand.” the energy summit in Concord, lawmakers discussed the possibility of bringing biomass energy back online in New Hampshire after several plants were shut down a few years ago. New Hampshire consumer advocate Donald Kreis said the cost of any new initiatives shouldn’t come out of ratepayers’ pockets. “We have to be careful over the long run that we don’t take economic development initiatives that we should pay for as a state and impose them on ratepayers who really should just pay for electricity on their electric bills,” Kreis said.Help is on the way for some New Hampshire families, with new heating and electric assistance signed into law last week. Many Granite Staters can also take advantage of ongoing programs that provide assistance for energy and utility bills.

Energy leaders from across New Hampshire came together Monday for an energy summit as concerns grow about high energy prices as colder weather nears.

Experts at the 10th annual New Hampshire Energy Summit predicted an expensive winter for Granite Staters, but they said it all depends on how cold it actually gets.

“It’s the most challenging time of the year for the electric grid,” said Eric Johnson, of ISO New England, the organization that oversees the region’s electrical grid.

Johnson said the cold weather presents some fuel challenges for the grid, and high prices for natural gas mean high prices for electricity.

He advised home and business owners to look into energy-efficient strategies.

“I would work with the local electric utility company, the distribution company,” he said. “They have programs to help people do audits of their facilities, and they have programs that might help them with things like electrification of different lighting technologies. So, if you can use more efficient lighting, you can bring down your electricity demand.”

At the energy summit in Concord, lawmakers discussed the possibility of bringing biomass energy back online in New Hampshire after several plants were shut down a few years ago. New Hampshire consumer advocate Donald Kreis said the cost of any new initiatives shouldn’t come out of ratepayers’ pockets.

“We have to be careful over the long run that we don’t take economic development initiatives that we should pay for as a state and impose them on ratepayers who really should just pay for electricity on their electric bills,” Kreis said.

Help is on the way for some New Hampshire families, with new heating and electric assistance signed into law last week. Many Granite Staters can also take advantage of ongoing programs that provide assistance for energy and utility bills.

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