Inside this Edition of the Freedom Energy Logistics Muni Minute

Freedom Energy Logistics | July 2022

Exploring Natural Gas Options for your Municipality

Curtailment Season & Capacity Tags

Energy Insights and Important Dates

Exploring Natural Gas Options for your Municipality

Brian White, Municipal Program Director

Purchasing gas with Freedom Energy provides municipal businesses the same benefits as electricity. Yet, many cities, towns, housing authorities, and water/sewer departments have not pursued this option.

On average, municipal business consumes over 80% of their annual consumption between November and April when utilities charge the most. The annual spend is often a lot less than electricity, but clients that chose to review their options have recognized some excellent savings. New England utility rates are at all-time highs, with one utility charging over $1/therm from June through October; these are low-demand summer months!

In just the last 60 days, we’ve helped five cities/towns execute new gas agreements saving them over $308,000 compared to the previous 12-month spend. There’s no telling how much they’ll save over the next 12 months, given the recent increases.

Our other municipal clients, who were already purchasing natural gas from Freedom Energy, saved over $1,000,000, and 2023 will bring those numbers even higher. Natural gas drives energy pricing in New England as over 50% of electricity generation comes from gas-fired plants. The US plans to become the largest exporter of LNG (liquified natural gas) by the end of 2022, depleting our storage and bringing domestic pricing closer to global prices. A great way to combat this is looking early!

Natural Gas agreements may be purchased several years in advance of the start date, and Freedom Energy has already executed multiple agreements that begin in 2023, 2024, and even 2025. Even if you believe you are all set, it costs nothing to look, so you’ll gain knowledge on future budgets and possibly a new agreement.

Recent copies of your utility bills will allow us to provide a complete Bid Summary, illustrating the budget impact and potential savings with no commitment to move forward. We could be looking at $2/therm gas this winter, you do not want to get caught paying that!

Curtailment Season & Capacity Tags

Since 2009, the Freedom Energy team has been dedicated to assisting its customers on when to curtail electricity use to reduce their capacity tag resulting in lower capacity costs. The Annual System Peak is the single hour that results in the highest demand for electricity in the calendar year New England wide.

This year, Wednesday, July 20, exceeded the previous high set on Tuesday, July 12 by 3,748 MW and is now the peak to date this year at 24,330 MW. As a result, Wednesday was the first day Freedom Energy sent a curtailment notice to clients enrolled in our System Peak Notification Program.

The 5-day period beginning Wednesday was interesting for many reasons. The utilities dispatched curtailment events for 4-7 PM on Wednesday and Thursday. The heat wave continued into the weekend, and ISO-NE implemented Demand Response events throughout New England on Saturday evening and late Sunday afternoon in RI.

To recieve Peak Notifications click here.

To learn more about Annual System Peak click here.

Energy Insights and Important Dates

Did you know the EPA’s Clean School Bus Program is now available? The program assists in replacing school buses with electric and low-emission school buses. Refer to the US EPA’s website for information about the program, qualification requirements, and how to apply for the first round of funding. The program application period is open until Friday, August 19. With funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, EPA’s new Clean School Bus Program provides $5 billion over the next five years (FY 2022-2026) to replace existing school buses with zero-emission and low-emission models. EPA is offering $500 million through the 2022 Clean School Bus Rebates for zero-emission and low-emission school bus rebates as the first funding opportunity.

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