The Northeast Gas Association has launched a year-long initiative to raise awareness about the importance of natural gas infrastructure to Massachusetts’ economy and its essential role as the Commonwealth transitions to an electricity grid that increasingly relies upon renewable energy.
“Massachusetts continues to see rising demand for natural gas in homes and businesses, as a clean and affordable energy option,” said Tom Kiley, President and CEO of NGA. “The Commonwealth and the region also fundamentally rely on natural gas for power sector reliability. As more traditional power units retire, from coal and oil to nuclear, including several large facilities in Massachusetts, the need for natural gas is more important than ever. Natural gas will also increasingly partner with renewable energy sources to power the grid. We need to ensure that the natural gas system can meet that demand, through both system modernization and – where needed – system expansion,” Kiley added.
For more than two decades, natural gas has played a primary role in positioning Massachusetts as a national environmental leader by helping dramatically reduce the state’s air emissions.
As the state moves to comply with Global Warming Solutions Act emissions reductions, natural gas will play a pivotal role in balancing energy innovation with continued affordability and reliability – for homeowners, businesses, and the electric power sector. Even as renewables become more reliable and cost-efficient, gas-fired generation will still be required as a safe, reliable, and dependable backstop for the electricity grid of the future.
Throughout the campaign, NGA members and staff will work with key stakeholders and constituents to encourage implementation of a long-term state energy strategy that balances the need for natural gas and renewable energy resources, including modernization of the natural gas distribution system.
NGA also will release a ‘state of the industry’ report and host a Natural Gas Awareness Day later this spring to promote the economic and environmental benefits of natural gas.