Natural Gas: For a Sustainable Massachusetts

Natural gas has been an energy, economic, and environmental success story for Massachusetts.

As our state turns its focus to bring on more renewable resources such as wind and solar, we need natural gas more than ever. While nuclear and coal plants are shutting down, natural gas provides a steady stream of reliable electricity that serves as a backstop to renewables and keeps the lights on. Natural gas 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

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10s of 1000s

more use gas for basic life necessities

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Massachusetts businesses count on natural gas


businesses in MA use natural gas

Map of Massachusetts


of the natural gas consumed in MA is used by commercial and industrial customers

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Massachusetts’ economy counts on the natural gas industry


gas utility employees in MA

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Thousands more

provide goods and services to the industry

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Millions of dollars

are contributed to charities by the industry

Millions of dollars

are contributed to charities by the industry

Massachusetts’ environment relies on the natural gas industry


Reduction in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions since 1990

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Reduction in gas system methane emissions between 1990 and 2017

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The amount that natural gas systems contribute to the state’s total GHG emissions

Massachusetts utility energy efficiency programs lead the nation

Massachusetts Ranked #1


Massachusetts retained the top spot for nine 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 and natural gas sectors.

Since 2013

MA gas savings

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Massachusetts’ natural gas utilities are committed to safety

2,900 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

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  Increase in generation of electricity by natural gas from 2000 to 2018.

 At the same time, air emissions in region are down – thanks in large part to natural gas power plants.


 SO2, down 98%


 NOx, down 74%


 CO2, down 34% 


 (Source: ISO-NE, 12-18, based on 2001-17 data)



U.S. EIA: “In 2018 Massachusetts generated 67% of its electricity from natural gas.” In EIA chart above, 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

solar and wind

Natural Gas

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)

MA map with natural gas icons

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.

This is a project of the Northeast Gas Association and the Massachusetts natural gas utilities. For more information please contact:

Northeast Gas Association

75 Second Avenue, Suite 510

Needham Heights, MA 02494-2859

Phone 781.455.6800


@ Copyright 2019 Northeast Gas Association