The City of Boston has released the long-awaited details of its Community Choice Electricity program (CCE). BCAN is thrilled to confirm that CCE offers all Boston electricity customers a painless but meaningful way to take action against climate change. The prices are competitive with Eversource’s: in fact, you can buy greener electricity and still save money. The customer notification and enrollment process has begun, and the program itself starts in February. Read on to find out more.
How Green is CCE? How Much Will It Cost?
CCE will offer a choice of three products (electricity plans). Standard, the default option, will have 10 percentage points more renewable content than the minimum percentage required by Massachusetts law. This minimum, called the Class I RPS, goes up two percentage points per year and will be 18% in 2021, so Standard will start at 28% green. Optional Green 100 will be 100% renewably sourced. Optional Basic will contain the state-required minimum–as does Eversource’s Basic Service product.
Prices for the respective plans will be as follows:
|Product||Percentage Points Class I Renewables Above RPS||Total Percentage Class I Renewables (2021)||Price (cents/kWh)||Effective Time Period (2021)|
|CCE Standard (default)||10||28||11.409||Feb.-Nov.|
|CCE Optional Green 100|
|CCE Optional Basic|
|Eversource Basic Service||0||18||11.882||Jan.-June|
Here is what you would pay for electricity supply if your usage is a typical 600 kWh per month:
|Product||Percentage Points Class I Renewables Above RPS||Total Percentage Class I Renewables (2021)||Monthly Supplier Charges||More or (Less) than Eversource Basic |
|CCE Optional Green 100||N/A||100||$88.58||$17.29|
|CCE Optional Basic||0||18||$65.75||($5.54)|
|Eversource Basic Service||0||18||$71.29|
So . . . with CCE Standard, you get electricity that is substantially greener than Eversource’s, for $2.84 less per month! If you can afford $17.29 more per month than you would have paid Eversource, you can opt up to 100% green and help fight climate change even more. Or, if every penny counts in your household, you can opt down to CCE Optional Basic and save $5.54 a month compared to Eversource, while still supporting a program that cuts carbon emissions citywide. We hope that you will choose the greenest CCE product that fits your budget.
For full disclosure, we must explain that these prices are only for the time periods shown in the first table, and that prices for future periods cannot be guaranteed. During the life of the program, there may be times when Eversource’s rates are lower than CCE’s. The City, which makes no profit from CCE, aims to offer electricity that is as green as possible while keeping rates favorable over the long run. According to the Energy News Network, similar programs founded over the past few years in other Massachusetts cities and towns are saving their customers lots of money.
What Do I Have to Do?
If you are a Boston electricity customer and Eversource is your supplier, you will be receiving a detailed mailing from the City. Read it carefully.
Meanwhile, here are the basics:
- If Eversource is your supplier, you will automatically be enrolled in CCE. (You may opt out if you wish — though we’re not sure why you would.) Our previous blog post explains how to determine who your current supplier is.
- If you already have a supplier other than Eversource, you are not eligible for CCE while that contract is active. If you want to switch to CCE, go to the City’s “Protect Your Electric Account” page and scroll down to “How Can You Switch Your Electric Supplier?” to learn how to change without financial penalties.
- New CCE enrollees are automatically signed up for the Standard product. To choose Optional Green 100 or Optional Basic instead, use this online form, or call the CCE supplier, Constellation, at (833) 930-3161.
- If you join CCE, Eversource will still be your electric utility. They will still bill you and maintain the power lines, so customer service and system reliability will stay the same.
The City is hosting explanatory webinars starting December 14, with time for Q&A. Register here.
Correction, December 4, 2020. An earlier version of this post incorrectly cited typical electricity usage as 600 kWh per year, instead of per month. Comparisons of monthly supplier charges for CCE products vs. Eversource Basic Service have been recalculated accordingly.
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