Massachusetts Approves Energy Efficiency Plan

The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approved the state’s new three-year energy efficiency plan.

Inside the new energy-efficiency plan is a sizable incentive program for projects pursuing Passive House certification. There will be funding available “for Passive House training for contractors and consultants, Passive House pilot projects and data benchmarking, and green design charrettes. There are incentives to mitigate soft costs to help provide financial certainty early in projects, including an early modeling subsidy, design team incentives, design charrette incentives, and a certification subsidy. These programs will cover both residential and commercial projects.”

If someone takes the PHIUS CPHC training and passes the online and take-home exams, they will get a 50% cost reimbursement. Multifamily projects of 4 or more stories with 5 or more units can qualify for a variety of assistance, such as:

• Feasibility study: 100%
• Feasibility costs: $5,000
• Energy Modeling: 75% of energy modeling costs to $20,000
• Pre-Certification: $500/unit
Net Performance Bonuses:
i. Certification: $2500/unit
ii. $0.75/kwh
iii. $7.50/therm

There is an important disclaimer of note. All of these incentives are reimbursements. The money will be paid after full certification is granted, to help prevent money being spent on projects that never come to fruition
(and therefore wouldn’t save the money they propose to save). That does mean people will have to “float” loans in order to receive the money, but it is a prudent financial tactic in a day and age where the public is increasingly demanding anti-corruption and anti-fraud measures.

The state’s 3-year energy efficiency plan is contained in this 600+ page document. However, the pertinent residential portion spans approximately 50 pages, and starts here.