Natural gas is widely used as a clean, available and affordable power source for New England. In fact, New England relies on natural gas to fuel 40 percent of the region’s power generation.

However, New England’s natural gas infrastructure is inadequate, and when demand is high but the infrastructure problems reduce supply, prices go up. In fact, infrastructure constraints have cost the region at least $7.5 billion over the past three winters alone. That’s not fair for New England homeowners and businesses.

A focus on expanding the region’s energy infrastructure will lower natural gas prices, help businesses maintain competitiveness, allow the region to retain and attract new jobs and increase disposable income for families.

New England already relies heavily on natural gas.

Since 2000, New England’s reliance on natural gas has increased tremendously. Today, 40 percent of the region’s power supply comes from natural gas.

However, pipeline infrastructure to transport natural gas has not kept pace with this increased demand, and is reaching maximum capacity to meet both electricity generation and space heating demands.

A more robust pipeline infrastructure will allow New England to reap the benefits of the region’s ample supply of natural gas, including price stability and gas reliability.

New power plants will be powered by natural gas.

Regional environmental policies and federal requirements mean that New England’s policy makers and state government leaders are retiring older power plants. Proposed replacement power generation is expected to consist of 66 percent natural gas.

That’s good news for clean, affordable and reliable power, but it will require expanded natural gas pipeline capacity and new transmission lines to move electricity to and within the region.

Infrastructure investments will also keep energy prices reasonable, and will provide the region with an influx of new construction and related jobs.

Failing to invest in natural gas infrastructure will be costly.

The economic consequences associated with a failure to build natural gas and electricity infrastructure to serve New England’s energy needs will affect the region’s economy, employment and disposable income.

  • Lack of new energy infrastructure will cost the region $5.4 billion in higher energy costs.
  • Higher energy costs will lead to the loss of 52,000 private-sector jobs.
  • Lack of energy infrastructure will reduce household spending by $12.5 billion.
  • $9 billion in foregone construction activity results in a loss of 115,600 jobs.

Expanded energy infrastructure is vital for New England.

Natural gas is a clean, available and affordable energy solution for New England. But without proper infrastructure, New Englanders cannot reap the benefits.

A focus on improving the regional infrastructure and pipeline capacity will create jobs, boost the economy and positively affect the quality of life.

Natural gas is the right choice for New England. Now local and state governments need to support the infrastructure investments to let New England realize the benefits of natural gas.