The Nelson Community Power committee was established by the Select Board in October 2021, with the following members: Patsy Beffa-Negrini, Mare-Anne Jarvela, Sandy MacKenzie, Jonathan Pfister, Gary Robinson, Greg Rothman, Lisa Sieverts, Betsy Street, and Bill Waterston, with Rick Weyerhaeuser in an advisory role.
Community power aggregation is a way for town residents and small businesses to band together and purchase electricity at wholesale prices. Right now each of us buys electricity as individual households or businesses. Community power is similar to how the Nelson School buys electricity: instead of purchasing power on its own, the school is in a group that buys power together and saves money.
To have the option to save money and/or purchase power from renewable energy sources.
This project is specific to Nelson.
People Wonder . . .
If Nelson and other towns adopt community power, will that put Eversource out of business? No. Eversource is a public utility and not in the business of making and selling electricity. Its responsibility is to support and maintain the infrastructure—the poles and power grid— that brings the electricity to us. With community power, Eversource will continue to take care of the electric lines and help us during storms when we might lose power. There are two parts to your electric bill and the amount you pay to Eversource to deliver power will not be impacted by a community power program. You will still be billed by Eversource only; you will not receive two separate bills.
If Nelson decides as a town to adopt community power aggregation will I be forced to participate? No. Community power aggregation is sometimes called community choice aggregation. You will always have the choice whether or not to join Nelson Community Power, you can change your mind at any time. The plans include options that guarantee savings slightly better than Eversource’s regular rate, also know as their default service. So if you decide to participate, you should save on your electric bill.
In the next few months the Nelson Community Power Committee will be presenting a survey to Nelson residents. The survey will help the Committee better understand town residents’ and businesses’ needs and preferences. Many community power aggregation plans, in addition to offering a basic service that meets NH State standards for renewable energy, also offer plans that will purchase more renewable energy for a slightly higher price, or 100% renewable energy for those who are willing to spend a bit more. This last option is great for those who are unable to install solar panels due to financial or site issues, but want to support clean energy.
Community power aggregation doesn’t cost the town money nor raise taxes. It provides choices and options to residents to meet their needs, save money, and support renewable energy. For more information visit The Nelson Community Power website.
And look for regular updates here at Nelson In Common.