Natural Gas: For a Sustainable MassachusettsNatural gas has been an energy, economic, and environmental success story for Massachusetts.
As our state seeks to transform its energy system and increase clean energy investments, the role of natural gas remains more important than ever. Natural gas provides a steady stream of reliable electricity that serves as a backstop to renewables and keeps the lights on. Natural gas also keeps our economy humming and our homes warm in winter.
To learn more scroll down. You can also download and read the full report about why natural gas is good for Massachusetts.
Massachusetts families count on natural gas
of residences heat with natural gas
10s of 1000s
more use gas for basic life necessities
Massachusetts businesses count on natural gas
businesses in MA use natural gas
of the natural gas consumed in MA is used by commercial and industrial customers
Massachusetts’ environment relies on the natural gas industry
Reduction in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions since 1990
Reduction in gas system methane emissions between 1990 and 2018
The amount that natural gas systems contribute to the state’s total GHG emissions
Massachusetts = Efficiency Leader
Massachusetts has achieved the #1 or the #2 spot for ten years in a row (!) in the annual State Energy Efficiency scorecard rankings by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) – a tremendous achievement – and one that involves both the electric & natural gas sectors.
Massachusetts’ natural gas utilities are committed to safety
3,100 miles replaced
of bare steel and cast iron mains, since year 2000; the miles of plastic pipe have doubled at the same time!
Gas leaks repaired
Industry supported legislation to classify and repair leaks
Gas utilities are
with municipal and advocacy groups on gas leak repair and safety
Natural gas will continue to play a critical role in the generation of electricity and fueling our state’s economy for decades to come
Increase in generation of electricity by natural gas from 2000 to 2020.
At the same time, air emissions in region are down – thanks in large part to natural gas power plants.
SO2, down 99%
NOx, down 78%
CO2, down 42%
(Source: ISO-NE, February 2021)
U.S. EIA noted in August 2020 that: “Natural gas fueled about two-thirds of Massachusetts’ total electricity net generation in 2019.”
In the EIA chart above, which shows the state’s power generation fuel mix from 2001 through 2018, the important role of natural gas is apparent (natural gas is shown in the light brown color). Chart source: U.S. EIA, Aug. 2019
Natural gas provides important system balancing in regional power generation, as other resources retire and new renewables increase their share.
Solar and Wind
Natural gas enables a greater role for renewables, and provides system reliability as other units retire
remains a leading fuel of choice for generation facilities
(over 1,200 megawatts of new natural gas generating capacity was
added in 2018 / 2019 in Massachusetts)
The Bottom Line? Gas is Good for Massachusetts.
Natural gas is an energy, economic, and environmental success story for Massachusetts. Natural gas provides the backbone we need to support renewable electricity generation.
Natural gas is essential to keeping the lights on, the economy growing, and our homes warm in the winter.