State News

Green Mountain Power bucks regional trend with lower rates for customers

A new report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) finds in New England electric rates for families and businesses went up an average of 9 percent last year. During that same time, GMP reduced rates by 2.46 percent. GMP has kept rates low for customers–as cost pressures increase–by finding efficiencies in operations and through the introduction of innovative products and services, among other things.

The EIA is part of the U.S. Department of Energy and its role is to collect, analyze, and disseminate independent and impartial energy information to promote sound policymaking, efficient markets, and public understanding of energy and its interaction with the economy and the environment.

GMP says that increases in the future are possible but expects to continue to buck the regional trend of higher costs due to market instability. GMP’s strategy of long-term power supply commitments protects its customers from the volatility other utilities in New England are experiencing.

“As cost pressures increase and the cost of doing business goes up, in order to keep rates low for our customers, GMP is focused on finding efficiencies within our own business and mitigating potential increases by continuing to innovate. New products and services empower our customers to save money by using less energy all while increasing comfort,” said Mary Powell, Green Mountain Power President and Chief Executive Officer. “As I look around the country, I see more utilities following our lead and responding to the growing imperative to move away from dirty inefficient sources of energy to a clean, sustainable and cost effective energy future.”

An analysis of GMP’s rates shows that inflation has risen faster than electricity rates, and the real electric cost for all GMP customers is lower than it was in 2001, even when adjusted for inflation.

Bill Reichert is the chief operating officer at Champlain Cable in Colchester, which employs 135 people. Reichert said the report was a validation of what they have experienced as a GMP customer.

“There are many costs that have Vermont in a non-competitive position. Having stable electricity rates–and recently decreased–is very important to us,” said Reichert. “GMP brings a lot of value to Vermont’s economy by being so focused on keeping rates as low as possible. I really appreciate the work that they are doing to insulate us from the regional trend of higher costs.”

“For families, these savings translate to real money,” said Ginger Basa, a residential GMP customer in Montpelier. “I appreciate GMP keeping their rates down. When raising four children, it really helps!”

GMP’s energy portfolio is 42 percent renewable. As Vermont’s “Energy Company of the Future,” GMP is offering new products and services, including a first-in-the-nation eHome program that helps homeowners improve their inefficient homes with the latest technology like heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, solar, weatherization, smart plugs and phone apps to control and track usage in real time from wherever they are.

“The data in the report demonstrate what we’ve known in Vermont,” said Powell. “It is possible to deliver low cost, highly reliable, clean energy for customers, while also empowering customers and leading the way with innovative energy solutions that lower costs, help Vermonters use less energy and increase comfort.”

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