Massachusetts to provide US$3.5M to nine businesses to help grow state's renewable thermal markets, strengthen infrastructure development; recipients include wood pellet, biodiesel and solar panel manufacturers

BOSTON , May 30, 2014 (press release) – The Patrick Administration’s Department of Energy Resources (DOER) today announced it is providing $3.5 million to nine businesses to help grow the Massachusetts renewable thermal markets and strengthen infrastructure development.

“The Patrick Administration is committed to growing our economy and supporting local businesses,” said DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “By developing the infrastructure needed to support the adoption of renewable heating and cooling technologies, we will increase consumer options to reduce both the use of fossil fuels and the amount of money spent by Massachusetts homeowners and businesses to heat and cool their buildings.”

These are the first grants from the new Massachusetts Renewable Thermal Business Investment Financing Program, which is designed to provide financial support for businesses seeking to establish or expand distribution, manufacturing or marketing of renewable thermal technologies or supply chain infrastructure. A variety of technologies are eligible including woody biomass, grass pellets, advanced biofuels, biogas, solar thermal, and inverter driven air and ground source heat pumps.

The grants are funded through Alternative Compliance Payment (ACP) funds. ACPs are made by electricity suppliers that do not meet their statutory Renewable Portfolio Standard obligation to purchase a sufficient percentage of renewable energy. ACP funds are allocated by DOER each year.

Grants are being awarded to the following companies:

Company Project Description Award Designation
1.       Biomass Thermal Energy Council, Washington, D.C.* Development of efficiency test procedures for commercial-sized solid biomass boilers $75,000
2.       Cape Cod Biofuels, Sandwich Increase advanced biodiesel production through facility expansion and upgrades $280,000
3.       Cook Forest Products, Upton Purchase Peterson wood chipper to manufacture micro-chips from wood waste for industrial end users $250,000
4.       EverStor, Pembroke Development/manufacturing of residential solar hot water storage kit for distribution in MA/NE $90,000
5.       Maine Energy Systems, Salisbury Develop loose, bulk pellet distribution facility(ies) in MA and introduce a pellet boiler showroom $806,598
6.       Meister, Boston Market development platform - procureme nt pools, web education, equipment dealer trainings $230,500
7.       Northeast Biodiesel, Greenfield Complete biodiesel plant, expand waste vegetable oil collection and biodiesel distribution $540,000
8.       Rocky Mountain Wood, Wilbraham Development of a community scale wood pellet manufacturing facility $1,000,000
9.       T. Jepson & Sons, Spencer Expansion of wood chip production with procurement of Peterson 4300 chipper $250,000

Total Award Designations  


*Council includes Massachusetts-based member companies

Renewable thermal technologies are part of EEA’s strategy to meet greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets set forth by the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA). The GWSA requires a 25 percent GHG reduction of 1990 levels by 2020 and an 80 percent reduction by 2050.

“Congratulations to Cape Cod Biofuels for receiving this grant, as well as the other award recipients of the Massachusetts Renewable Thermal Business Investment Financing Program,” said Senate President Therese Murray. “These grants will make a significant difference in our how our businesses and residents consume energy, as well as encourage the adoption of more cost-effective and renewable sources and strengthen the Commonwealth’s status as a leader in the clean energy movement.”

"These investments represent yet another step toward a cleaner, more efficient, more sustainable future," said Senate Majority Leader Stan Rosenberg. "The people involved in these projects are demonstrating a remarkable ability to examine old problems with new vision."

“As a leader in sustainable forestry in Central Massachusetts, T. Jepson & Sons is an organization deserving of this grant,” said Senator Stephen M. Brewer. “This grant program will spur the renewable thermal industry in the Commonwealth, as well as reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. I congratulate T. Jepson & Sons on receiving this grant.”

“I’m pleased to see the Commonwealth continue to support renewable energy initiatives that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions according to the targets we’ve set forth in the Global Warming Solutions Act,” said Senator Marc R. Pacheco, Senate Chairman of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture, and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change.

“The use of renewables is an important part of the present and future of our state’s energy portfolio,” said Representative Anne Gobi, House Chair of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture. “I am thrilled to see local companies like the Jepson’s receive funding to assist them in driving the technology forward and in turn helping homeowners and other businesses with their energy needs.”

The Patrick Administration’s aggressive clean energy initiatives have made Massachusetts a leader in energy efficiency, renewable energy and emissions reductions. The American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy has named Massachusetts number one for three years running. This year, Governor Patrick set a new solar goal after reaching the previous goal of 250 megawatts four years early. The Commonwealth now aims to install 1,600 megawatts of solar capacity by 2020. The clean energy revolution is yielding economic benefits as well, with 11.8 percent job growth in the last year; nearly 80,000 people are employed in the cleantech industry in Massachusetts.


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