At Town Meeting, citizens will have the opportunity to authorize the Select Board to investigate, and possibly pursue, choice in electric power supply for the town and its citizens through a collective group purchasing program called Community Choice Aggregation (CCA). Voting “yes” to investigate electrical aggregation under Article 16 does not mean that you vote for CCA to be automatically adopted, but rather you provide the opportunity for the Select Board to pursue CCA if it would be advantageous for the town and its citizens.
What are the potential advantages of CCA?
CCA provides price stability of your electricity supply over the term of a contract, enables choice in the amount of renewable energy you desire for your electrical service, and has the potential to lower the cost of your electricity (depending on contracted rates for each tier of offering). Eversource will continue to use its distribution infrastructure to deliver your electricity. You receive the same bill from Eversource, and they continue to address outages or other issues.
Currently your only choices are to stay with Eversource’s Basic Service or to go and find your own provider (usually in order to increase the amount of renewable energy in your supply mix). CCA typically gives the entire community several “tiers” of prices and mixes of renewable and traditionally-fueled electricity to choose from. You can opt-out and stay with Eversource, choose the CCA Basic tier (mirroring Eversource’s Basic Service), chose a CCA tier with more renewable energy than Basic Service, or, if offered, select to have 100% of your electricity generated from renewable sources. Currently, Sherborn homes consume close to 20 million kWh per year. Emissions from electricity use makes up about a third of Sherborn’s residential greenhouse gas footprint. CCA is an opportunity to substantially reduce the impact of these emissions on our environment, health and future of the planet.
What are the next steps, assuming the Article 16 is adopted?
What tiers are offered will be determined as part of the program the Select Board designs. Input from citizens is solicited throughout the process of designing our specific CCA offerings. The town can cease pursuing a CCA agreement at any time without penalty. No citizen is required to participate in the CCA. Consumers can leave the CCA, change CCA tier, or find another supplier altogether, at any time and without penalty (by law).
The Town, however, cannot even begin the process of exploring the options unless Article 16 is adopted. We have nothing to lose, and potentially much to gain, by a YES vote on Article 16.
To learn more about this article, and aggregation in general, visit the Energy Committee webpage to find the “Community Choice Aggregation Presentation.”
- Sherborn Energy Committee