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Massachusetts DOER Issues Demand Response Grants

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito have announced the awarding of nine grants totaling more than $4.6 million for electric and gas peak demand reduction programs. Funded by the state’s Department of Energy Resources (DOER), the grants will help demonstrate ways to broaden electricity and gas peak load reduction strategies.

“Massachusetts is proud to be a national leader in energy-efficiency programs that reduce overall consumption, and we are committed to continuing our work to improve energy costs disproportionately affected by times of peak demand,” said Gov. Baker. “The demonstration projects funded through these grants will strengthen our innovation economy and provide the Commonwealth with a roadmap for reducing our most expensive energy loads and securing our energy future.”

“Today’s grants will ensure that the Commonwealth remains at the forefront of energy innovation by utilizing emerging technologies to reduce peak energy usage,” said Lt. Gov. Polito. “From residential customers to municipal governments, these grants have the potential to have a serious impact for Massachusetts’ innovation economy and ratepayers.”

The following projects have received grant funding:

$478,688 — B2Q will work with National Grid to aggregate an energy portfolio in municipal buildings in the City of Medford to create a complete dispatchable demand reduction resource. This model could be replicated by any municipality in the Commonwealth.

$179,500 — Commonwealth.eCurv will work with Eversource to design an easily scalable model of peak electricity demand reduction for big-box retail stores, demonstrating on four Kohl’s sites in Massachusetts.

$162,210 — Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE) will work with National Grid to evaluate consumer attitudes toward and acceptance of using connected devices for peak demand reduction.

$200,708 — Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE) will work with National Grid to design, deploy and measure a small gas demand reduction program to assess the potential for and value of gas demand reduction at large.

$600,000 — Genbright will demonstrate the ability to capture up to 6 value streams at retail and wholesale levels, including from peak demand reduction, by deploying behind-the-meter battery storage at a manufacturing site.

$1.5 million — Genbright will use thermal energy storage at residential sites for peak demand reductions on Nantucket. The project aims to demonstrate a non-wires alternative to investment in a third undersea transmission cable to the island.

$475,000 — Holyoke Gas and Electric (HGE) will install a grid-scale lithium-ion battery on a distribution feeder served from one of their substations. They will operate the battery for distribution peak demand management. UMass Amherst will analyze the performance of the battery and quantify the peak demand reduction value of the equipment for use by other utility companies.

$98,000 — Sagewell will work with at least two municipal electric companies to demonstrate aggregated peak electricity demand reduction through off-peak electric vehicle charging.

$996,455 — Tesla will demonstrate aggregated energy storage for peak demand reduction in National Grid territory. Tesla will work to quantify the benefits of the demonstrated peak demand reductions and evaluate the model’s viability at scale.

DOER is an agency of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. Visit to learn more. ♦


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