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Newsletter

April Newsletter

After a busy March, Spring is here! Earth Day approaches – I hope to see you at an event this month!

Towns across NH turned out to town voting days to make local change. 350NH supported successful resolutions in favor of community power in Exeter and to remove the Mill Pond Dam in Durham. Community power will help Exeter utilize more renewable energy, and removal of the Dam will improve the health of the Oyster River!
The 350NH Youth Team held a Rally for Renewables at the State House! Students from across NH spoke about the failures of the state legislature to pass climate bills this session, and about the need for solar and wind energy. Thank you to everyone who joined us!
After a three day trial in Merrimack County Superior Court and four hours of deliberation, the jury reached a decision regarding the 2019 Hooksett coal train blockade. Over 60 supporters joined us in court and online to listen to activists’ intentions to stop the worst effects of the climate crisis by ending the use of coal in New England. Read more about the jury trial here.
350NH is hiring Electoral Fellows, a Youth Organizer, and Interns to join our team in the fight for climate justice! Take your climate organizing and advocacy skills to the next level and join our team to elect climate champions, shut down the coal plant in Bow, and win renewable energy for NH! Check out the job descriptions on our website.

Don’t forget to check out our “Upcoming Events” page for more information about meetings, events, and chances to connect this month!

TAKE ACTION

The New England electrical grid regulator (ISO-NE) just allocated hundreds of millions of ratepayer dollars to keep dirty fossil fuel plants alive until 2026, including the coal-fired Merrimack Station. Now, we have until May 5th to submit public comments opposing federal approval of this decision.

Can you submit a comment? Click here for our guide on how to submit a public comment.

Thank you for your support! 350NH could not operate without the amazing volunteers and donors who make this work possible. Thank you for supporting us, and please e-mail us if you have any questions or want to talk one-on-one.

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Youth Team

YOUTH RALLY FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY ACTION

The 350NH Youth Team threw a rally in Concord to call out the NH legislature’s inaction this session and demand renewable energy legislation.

CONCORD, NH — On a windy Concord afternoon, approximately 50 people showed up to the front of the State House to protest leaders’ inaction on the climate crisis. Frustrated by the lack of progress on climate legislation, several people, including Senator David Waters, gave speeches about the dangers of fossil fuels and extolled the virtues of renewable energy. Other speakers, such as Dan Weeks, focused on the specific benefits of certain forms of renewable energy, like solar or offshore wind. The speeches, accompanied by chants and music from the Leftist Marching Band, left everybody in high spirits and eager to make a difference in the climate crisis. As the crowd dispersed, they plastered stickers around Concord with the slogan “Rally for Renewables– Climate Justice Now” a message to legislators.

“Today we are demonstrating that we want our legislators to do the right thing and pass bills in favor of renewable energy,” said Nikhil Chavda, student at Coe-Brown and 350NH Youth Fellow. “There are solar power bills in the State House right now, and we want our elected officials to stop ignoring our calls and pass this legislation. We are here because the state’s current actions and status quo are totally unacceptable, and they need to make some changes.”

In the weeks before the rally, climate-related legislation stalled in the State House, leaving many NH residents feeling frustrated and helpless about the future of the climate. Among the bills that failed were HB1506, HB1601, HB1621, and HB1419. These bills contained investments in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and climate-change related planning.  Recognizing this, the 350NH Youth Team brought their response to the state house: that the young people of New Hampshire are tired of our legislators’ inaction.

“We can bring hope back to my generation by making effective change,” said Katherine Lessard, 350NH Youth Fellow and resident of Bow, NH, where the last coal fired power plant in New England stands. “We’re here today to demand legislation that will make a tangible impact on stopping the fossil fuel industry from taking the futures and the hope from my generation. My generation deserves the chance to look forward to the future, not fear it.”

The crowd was high-energy, with a mixture of youth activists, seniors who were veterans of the climate fight, local legislators, and members of ReVision Energy. People held massive signs and banners with slogans such as “Climate Justice NOW,” “There is no Planet B,” and “Denial is not a policy.” The 350NH Youth Team focused on communicating the urgency and impact of climate justice.

“I am here to plead for climate action because we know for a fact that climate change is causing drier, warmer winters and it is happening more quickly in the Northeast than in many other parts of the world,” said Levi Roberts, 350NH Youth Fellow from Washington Valley. “Chris Sununu boasted over the years that he is a guy standing for expansion of our so-called “thriving” state economy and job growth, but he failed to sign climate legislation that made it to his desk, and he prevents our state from transitioning away from fossil fuels.”

350NH activists plan to capitalize off of this momentum by pressuring elected officials to make change.

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Uncategorized

Exeter: Vote Yes on 32 for Community Power

Town voting day is just around the corner, and we’re excited to see Exeter vote Yes on #32 for Community Power! Here’s why members of the 350NH Exeter Chapter want you to vote yes on 32:

Dear Editor,
Please vote yes on article #32 at the Exeter town election on March 8. This article allows Exeter to join other municipalities in NH to buy electricity directly from suppliers. The state of NH has set up the program to allow local control over power and is designed to lead to less expensive power as well as the ability to choose sources of electricity that cause less pollution. Currently an individual citizen can choose to get their power from any source but the process is an effort and can cost more than the  standard rate. When this article passes, the town of Exeter will join a larger group giving us more purchasing power. The community power program is designed such that the cost will never be more than the standard that most of us are currently paying. Individual households can opt out of the community program and keep their current source of power. There will also be an option for individuals to choose to pay extra for greener power. It is a win for our household budgets, a win for local control and a win for less pollution. Less pollution means healthier lungs for our citizens.Please vote yes on article #32.

– Susan Porter MD

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To the Editor:

On March 8 Exeter voters have an opportunity to approve a Community Power plan which is unanimously supported by the Select Board.  Many people don’t pay attention to their electric bills, until there is a significant increase, as there was in December. Community Power would allow Exeter, in  collaboration with other NH towns and cities,  to purchase electricity for residents and businesses with the goal of decreasing cost, improving price stability, and utilizing more renewable energy sources. Unitil would still be responsible for maintaining transmission lines and handling billing.  Residents and businesses can choose to opt out of the program at any time. Community Power programs have had bipartisan support at the state and local level, a rarity these days.  You can find more information about Community Power at https://www.exeternh.gov/bcc-cpac and vote Yes on Warrant Article #32.

– Stephanie Marshall

Member, Exeter Community Power Aggregation Committee

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Dear Seacoast Media Group Editor,

Article 32 on the March 2022 Exeter Town Warrant, to adopt and implement a Community Power Aggregation program, is an exciting opportunity for Exeter town residents and businesses, giving us the opportunity to increase renewable energy consumption, reduce electric energy created by fossil fuels, and save money.

NH is suffering from a lack of leadership on climate change issues at the state level.  Our state is lagging all other NE states in reducing our impact in the climate crisis.  It is, therefore, imperative that action and leadership come from the local level.  The Community Power Plan gives Exeter the ability to act now and increase our renewable energy usage.

One of the clear benefits of aggregating our electric energy purchases as a Town is local control of electricity costs.  Having advantageous rates locked in for several years by a Community Power Plan would avoid the current roller coaster electricity rates residents and businesses see twice a year.  Leveraging the total electric usage of town residents and businesses will give the ability to negotiate better rates and give choices in the percentage of renewable energy in the supply. I see no downside to this program at all, but should someone not want to take part, that choice is available, too.

This is also an equity opportunity for our Town.  Currently residents can choose a higher level of renewable energy in their electric supply, or they can install solar power for their home, if appropriate.  But these choices come at a financial cost.  This added cost is not accessible to all homeowners.  The Community Power Plan will give all Exeter homeowners the opportunity to use more renewable energy and less energy generated by fossil fuels – at the same or lower rate than they are currently paying.

These are reasons why I will vote Yes on Article 32 to approve the Community Power Aggregation program, and I encourage all other voters to vote Yes as well. 

– Sherri Nixon

Exeter, NH

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To the Editor:

The Exeter Community Power Aggregation Committee has created a Community Power Program for Exeter, supported by the Select Board and now before town voters as Warrant Article 32.Under state law RSA 53E, municipalities can aggregate or combine customer electric energy demand and purchase supplies as a larger group, thereby providing residents and businesses access to more stable rates  and also options for renewable energy sources at lower costs.This is an exciting and positive movement in meeting both climate and economic challenges, and has no additional costs for taxpayers or tax impact on the town.To learn more about Community Power and Article 32 you can google “Community Power Aggregation, Exeter, NH” or go to www.exeternh.gov/bcc-pac. And be sure to come out on March 8 and vote YES on article 32.

– Joan Pratt

Exeter, NH

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Newsletter

350NH March Newsletter

In Case You Missed it…

The people who run our energy grid (ISO-NE) held their “forward capacity auction” to give fossil fuel plants subsidies to stay open. While waiting for the results of this auction, No Coal No Gas held a parody auction of “horrible things” to reveal the absurdity of this practice.
We delivered our petition to Governor Sununu to urge him to sign an Executive Order for NH to procure more wind energy! While the states around us are building offshore wind, NH is lagging behind. We need to take advantage of the booming offshore wind industry now and bring good jobs and renewable energy to NH. Read and sign the petition here.
The 350NH Youth Team held a Climate Justice training! We talked about privilege, environmental justice, racial justice, and how we can be better allies and accomplices in the fight for climate justice!

Check out our “Upcoming Events” Page for all the events and chapter meetings happening this March! There’s a big rally in Concord on March 13th, and chances to get looped into No Coal No gas. Don’t forget to vote on March 8th if you live in an NH town!

TAKE ACTION

The CEOs of the companies that own the Merrimack Generating Station have the power to shut it down. We’re calling on these CEOs to file their paperwork to officially take this coal plant offline!

Send an email to these CEOs and demand a shut down of this coal plant.

Thank you for Your Support!
350NH could not operate without the amazing volunteers and donors who make this work possible! Thank you for supporting us, and please e-mail us if you have any questions or want to talk one-on-one!
Categories
Coal

ISO-New England: Stuck on Fossil Fuels

ISO New England (ISO-NE) has a record of artificially propping up more expensive coal, oil, and gas power plants at the expense of affordable, cleaner energy. Their “forward capacity market” serves to give huge subsidies to legacy power plants by granting funding three years in advance. (The Merrimack Generating Station in Bow also receives these subsidies.) The forward capacity market currently has a “minimum price offer rule” that limits clean energy projects in New England from bidding. According to Sabrina Shankman’s article in the Boston Globe, the rule was “created to help insulate fossil fuel power plants from having to compete against renewables that cost less due to state programs and subsidies that exist to help foster clean energy development. It created a floor below which a developer cannot bid, meaning that those less expensive energy supplies, like large-scale offshore wind or solar, aren’t able to compete.” It is absurd that this rule exists in the first place – if wind and solar are cheaper energy sources, then they should be prioritized in order to lower utility costs for ratepayers.

ISO-NE made a decision behind closed doors in early February 2022 to keep this rule for at least two more years – delaying renewable energy’s ability to enter the forward capacity market this year and severely limiting how much renewable energy will eventually be allowed in this process. Adding renewable energy to their forward capacity market is the bare minimum they could do to increase renewable energy capacity.

ISO-NE claims that their decision to bar renewable energy from the forward capacity market is to “ensure grid reliability.” There is little to no data proving that bringing more renewable energy into this system would disrupt grid reliability. What this decision does, instead, is feed into the greed and corruption of the fossil fuel industry. Shankman wrote, “In May of last year, ISO-NE announced its plans to eliminate the rule for New England, with a plan to lift it by an auction planned for February 2023. A few months later, in July, Dynegy, Calpine and Nautilus — all companies that own gas-fired power plants — offered up an amendment to that, asking that the rule be allowed to stay in place for two extra years to protect the reliability of the grid.” 

It appears that ISO-NE decided to keep their “minimum price offer rule” in place after bribes from gas companies. Keeping the rule in place is not for “grid reliability” as ISO-NE claims, but it is to serve the interest of coal, oil, and gas power plants that are destroying the climate. ISO-NE claims to put the interests of New England residents first, but they are showing us time and time again that their decisions are made in the interest of their wealthy stakeholders and fossil fuel companies. 

ISO-NE’s forward capacity market system is set up to serve dirty fossil fuels and stand in the way of New England’s transition to clean, renewable energy. Allowing renewable energy to take part in this system by eliminating their “minimum price offer rule” is a compromise from advocates and climate activists across the region. The forward capacity market upholds climate-destroying capitalist practices and will not allow us to complete a just transition to renewable energy. If ISO-NE can’t even give clean, CHEAP, renewable energy a chance in their market system, then their market system should not be allowed to exist. It is time for ISO-NE to stop listening to fossil fuel executives and listen to the ratepayers who do not want their utility bills to prop up dirty fossil fuels any more. ISO-NE: end the forward capacity market now, so that New England has a chance for a just transition to renewable energy.

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Uncategorized

The Climate Crisis is Hitting NH

Climate change has arrived in NH. This week severe flooding on the Seacoast caused power outages and trapped residents inside their homes. The flooding from this one storm cost New Hampshire tax payers thousands of dollars in damages and immeasurable risks to our health and environment from the pollution of trash and debris swept up from the road.

(photo from Brianna OBrien taken in Hampton, NH)

As the climate crisis continues to get worse and the sea level rises, storms and floods increase in frequency and severity. High tides are creeping up higher and higher, causing more damage to the Seacoast during flooding events. Parts of Route 1A could be regularly under water at the rate that sea levels are rising. Businesses and residents near the ocean will have to decide whether to adapt to increased flooding or relocate to avoid further disasters. 

​​

(photo from Brianna OBrien, taken in Hampton, NH)

New Hampshire needs to take action now in order to mitigate the worst effects of the climate crisis. We need to transition away from the fossil fuels that are causing the climate crisis and build renewable energy to power our communities. New Hampshire can save our coastal communities by investing in offshore wind, solar energy, heat pumps, increased energy efficiency and adaptation. We have the technology and policy solutions to make this happen but we’ll need to force our elected officials to act. It’s time to stop burning coal and kick climate denying legislators out of office. 

The climate crisis is fueling climate disasters here and around the world – it’s time to drastically change our energy systems before it is too late. 

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Uncategorized Newsletter

350NH January Newsletter

Happy New Year! We’ve got big plans for 2022 and can’t wait to get started. Please join us for an event or meeting this January! Want to get involved, but you’re not sure how? Contact us through our website and we can set up a time to meet!

– Rebecca Beaulieu (she/her/hers), Communications Director

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT…

On a cold Sunday night in December, climate carolers took to the streets in Concord to enlighten holiday shoppers about the Merrimack Generating Station in Bow. Head over to the No Coal No Gas Facebook page to watch some of the singing! Stay tuned for more ways to get involved and help us win a shut down date for the coal plant.
The CEOs of Atlas Holdings and Castleton Commodities (the two firms that own the coal plant in Bow) got a visit from some No Coal No Gas elves! The CEOs were delivered coal for Christmas because they refuse to shut down the Merrimack Generating Station.
We hit our fundraising goal! Thanks to your generous support, we raised over $60,000 to fund our campaigns for climate justice. To everyone who donated, shared, and supported our work this past year – thank you. 
 
We are ready to keep fighting for climate justice in 2022 and couldn’t do this work without you.
Check out our upcoming events page for more information about a Community Power event, a chance to testify at the state house, a training on Militarism & the Climate Crisis, and upcoming meetings you won’t want to miss!

TAKE ACTION

The NH Public Utilities Commission slashed funding for NHSaves – the state energy efficiency program. Energy efficiency measures reduce the demand for electricity, which can prevent the most expensive power plants from running and reduce costs for ratepayers. Write to the PUC today and tell them to reconsider their decision to cut the budget for NHSaves!

Thank you for Your Support!
350NH could not operate without the amazing volunteers and donors who make this work possible! Thank you for supporting us, and please e-mail us if you have any questions or want to talk one-on-one with one of us!
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Newsletter

Keeping Up with 350NH: December Newsletter

I can’t believe it’s already December! This year, we got Senator Maggie Hassan to refuse meetings with Exxon lobbyists, held dozens of actions, trained hundreds of volunteers, and brought people from across New England to Bow to take direct action to shut down the coal plant. I want to thank each and every one of you who volunteered your time, came to events, took direct action at the coal plant, sent letters to your representatives, and donated this year. We have ambitious plans for 2022 and thanks to your support we can keep dreaming big. I’m more motivated than ever to keep up this fight for climate justice, and am eager to connect with you in the coming year. 

– Rebecca (she/her/hers), Communications Director

In Case You Missed It

No Coal No Gas took a trip to Connecticut to visit the private equity firms that own the Merrimack Generating Station coal plant. We went directly to the offices of Atlas Holdings and Castleton Commodities to demand they shut down the coal plant – but they refused to meet with us. We left Atlas a pile of coal and rallied outside of Castleton’s offices, singing and chanting.
We’re hiring! 350NH is hiring for a Co-Executive Director to lead our team on a mix of fundraising, organizational management and strategy. Click here to learn more about the position and to apply by December 10th. Please share this opportunity! Come work with us in the fight for climate justice!
Thanks to your support, our Giving Tuesday campaign was a huge success! We set a goal to raise $60,000 by the end of the year, and we’re already half way there! We have big plans to elect progressive climate champions, increase NH’s renewable energy use, and shut down the coal plant in 2022 and we need your support to win our campaigns.
 
If you haven’t donated yet, you can do so at this link!
Our podcast team has been hard at work to premiere “Conversations for Climate Action!” Stay tuned for their first full episode in January, where they’re focusing on the costs of coal versus renewable energy. The podcast will soon be available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and wherever you listen.
If you are interested in helping develop future episodes, email jennifer@350nh.org! 

Upcoming Events

Get involved in our fight for climate justice! Check out our upcoming events on our events page here.

Take Action This Month

  1. Help us fight for climate justice by reaching our $60,000 fundraising goal! You can donate here OR purchase one of our 350NH Winter Hats here (Modeled by our friend Sammy in this photo!) Whether or not you are able to donate today, please share this link on social media!
  2. We’ve been taking direct action to stop burning coal in NH and we aren’t stopping now! If you’re interested in taking direct action or getting more involved in our coal campaign, please head to our coal page to learn more and get involved!
Thank you for Your Support!
350NH could not operate without the amazing volunteers and donors who make this work possible! Thank you for supporting us, and please e-mail us if you have any questions or want to talk one-on-one! 350NH is an independent organization and we depend on grassroots donations from people like you and me.
DONATE TO 350NH
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Uncategorized

NH Public Utilities Commission: A Huge Disappointment

The PUC’s recent decisions on Energy Efficiency programs and Liberty Utilities’ plan to expand fracked methane gas are a huge disappointment for the residents of NH. 

New Hampshire — Over the last week, the NH Public Utilities Commission has denied an important three-year energy efficiency program and approved a Firm Transportation Agreement with Tennessee Gas Pipeline, LLC and Liberty Utilities. Both of these moves are devastating for NH residents and prevent us from making essential moves towards renewable energy generation in NH.

“The decisions coming from the PUC this week are devastating for our state,” says Rebecca Beaulieu, Communications Director for 350 New Hampshire. “Cutting energy efficiency programs and allowing for fracked methane gas expansion is not going to move us towards the 100% renewable energy future we need to mitigate the worst of the climate crisis.”

New Hampshire lacks a solid plan to address the climate crisis and lags behind all other New England states in renewable energy production and energy efficiency. Rejecting this energy efficiency program will prevent progress we need to reduce our overall energy usage and cut energy costs – particularly for low-income Granite Staters. 

The approved Firm Transportation Agreement with Tennessee Gas Pipeline, LLC and Liberty Utilities is a 20-year contract to transport more fracked methane gas into New Hampshire and comes after 350 New Hampshire stopped Liberty from pursuing the Granite Bridge pipeline project in 2019.

“Granite Staters showed the PUC that we do not want more fracked methane gas in the state when we stopped the Granite Bridge pipeline,” says Jennifer Dube, Climate Organizer with 350 New Hampshire. “It is abysmal that the PUC is allowing Liberty Utilities to find another way to expand this dirty fossil fuel in our state.”

It is clear that the PUC does not consider the impacts of their decisions on our climate. They are perpetuating our reliance on fossil fuels instead of moving us towards a cleaner, renewable energy future. 

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Newsletter

Keeping Up with 350NH: November Newsletter

In Case You Missed it…

group of young people holding various cardboard signs that say No Coal No Gas, Green New Deal for NH, Build a Renewable Future, Climate Justice Now. They're in raincoats standing on a corner of a street.
At the end of September youth from across NH held six different climate strikes to call for climate action! NH is falling behind when it comes to renewable energy, and Governor Sununu is standing in the way of progress. NH is ready for a change! Read more about the Conway Strike and the Portsmouth Strike.
(Oct. 1st) More than 150 people gathered in Bow, NH at the last coal-fired power plant in New England. We held a rally with inspiring speakers, led a march down River Road, gathered on the water in  40 kayaks and canoes and took direct action to shut the plant down. A group of us planted a garden in the middle of the driveway, where 18 activists were arrested. Read more about the action here.
Our Members of Congress have been debating an Infrastructure Bill and a Budget Reconciliation Bill in Congress that could include huge investments in renewable energy, health care, green housing, paid family leave, a pathway to citizenship, and more. We’re calling on Senators Shaheen and Hassan to hold the line: no cuts to climate, care, and justice!

UPCOMING EVENTS: NOVEMBER

This month there are multiple chapter meetings, an opportunity for organizing training, actions in Connecticut, and more! Head over to our upcoming events page for more information.

Take Action to Get NH Off of Fossil Fuels

  1. The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is deciding on whether to allow Liberty Utilities to expand fracked methane gas use in NH. We stopped the Granite Bridge pipeline but Liberty continues to seek ways to expand fossil fuels in our state. Send a letter to the PUC today and ask them to reject Liberty’s proposal.
  2. For years, ISO New England (our energy grid operators) have paid the Merrimack Generating Station millions of dollars in subsidies to stay open. We need your help to stop these subsidies and save ratepayers millions of dollars.Can you submit a comment to FERC to tell them ISO New England must prioritize renewable energy, and not old coal plants like Merrimack Generating Station? (Click here for instructions!)
Thank you for Your Support!
350NH could not operate without the amazing volunteers and donors who make this work possible! Thank you for supporting us, and please e-mail us if you have any questions or want to talk one-on-one. 350NH is an independent organization and we depend on grassroots donations from people like you and me.
DONATE TO 350NH