Braintree Electric Light Department launches new energy management program

GateHouse News Service
Posted Jan 12, 2010

Braintree — Braintree Electric Light Department (BELD) is looking for residents who are interested in lowering their energy costs by trimming their usage and impact on the environment in 2010.

The newest offering in BELD’s BGREEN renewable energy program, “BGREEN@home,” will give customers simple tools to monitor their energy consumption and win prizes for their efforts.

BELD is one of six Massachusetts municipal electric departments to pilot GroundedPower, a new web-based technology that delivers real-time information and empowers customers to cut electricity use through goal setting, social networking, and rewards.

Each utility is seeking 50 homes to test the software.

Upon receiving detailed real-time information on how much electricity is being used and what it costs, participants can select from some 150 actions to see how much each will contribute to their energy savings.

In addition, customers can participate in a web-enabled network to share their experiences with residents of Danvers, Hingham, North Attleboro, Wakefield and Wellesley and help achieve individual and collective savings goals.

“I applaud these municipal light companies for providing customers with smart meter technology and other services that will help them understand the amount of energy they use, how they are using it, and ways to reduce their consumption and electric bills through energy efficiency,” Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Philip Giudice said. “Pilot projects such as this are helping the Commonwealth emerge as a national leader in energy innovation and efficiency.”

In 2009, the BGREEN team orchestrated the assembly of a 10.4 kilowatt solar array on the roof of BELD’s garage, and the department is currently exploring the installation of several wind turbines.

Customers who are interested in participating in BGREEN@home should contact BELD at 781.348.BELD (2353) or High-Speed Internet service is required. Braintree residents who are not currently BELD Broadband subscribers can contact the department for current offers.