MGED serves customers by purchasing electricity from regional generating plants all over New England and delivering this energy to Middleborough and Lakeville consumers. We also buy local energy produced by privately-owned solar arrays. Every customer who receives power from MGED is using electricity produced by this mix of generating resources including:
- Non-GHG-emitting generating plants comprised of those using nuclear energy, and early hydro-electric plants relying on water flow
- A variety of other non-emitting but less predictable generation technologies relying on converting natural resources such as solar and wind energy, labeled as renewable♦♦
- Fossil-fuel-burning plants - but currently at 0% for energy directly attributed to plants using natural gas and oil which emit green-house-gases (GHG). MGED briefly ran a natural gas generator during peak use resulting in less than 1/10th of 1% electricity produced but not purchased using fossil fuel.
♦♦These energy sources include a mix of production by renewable installations, some of which include the renewable attribute (RECs) and some without the renewable attribute, not available at the time of the contract.
Energy produced by nuclear power is non-GHG-emitting. We own a share of the output of the Seabrook power station in New Hampshire and the Millbrook power station in Connecticut. This part of the supply is labeled Carbon-Free Nuclear. Nuclear power provides our lowest-cost, most reliable supply through this legacy of partial ownership and through contracts for additional supplies, as Load Following energy (LFE). We’ve purchased the Emissions-Free-Energy Certificates (EFECs) for some of these additional supplies which counts toward non-GHG emitting supplies.
We have a reserved purchase of energy from the New York Power Authority Niagara Hydroelectric Power Station, a NY state/North East regional/federal power project which began operation in 1961. We have also contracted for Massachusetts hydroelectric projects at Cabot and Turner Falls. This total supply is labeled as Renewable Hydro and is non-GHG-emitting.
The Saddleback Ridge Wind Project is a 34.2 megawatt, 12-turbine wind project located in Carthage, Maine. Under a long-term contract, MGED receives just under seven percent of the project’s output. This produces around 7.35 million kilowatt-hours of electricity each year, or about 2.4 megawatts of capacity. This is listed as Renewable Wind and is non-GHG-emitting.
There are over 16 megawatts of privately-owned solar installations operating in the MGED service area. These include residential roof-top and yard solar arrays, commercial arrays and large-scale solar fields (with 2 community solar projects). We purchase excess power from homeowners and all power production from commercial installations and solar fields which feed into our distribution equipment. This allows the owners to gain the financial benefit of power sales and the dividend of Solar Renewable Energy Credit Sales (SRECs). To date, we haven’t bought the SRECs directly so this power doesn’t count toward our non-GHG-emitting supply. In the future, we will purchase and retire the SRECs to own the non-GHG-emitting renewable attribute as well.