February 21, 2018

Contact: Sinead Coleman,, 413-584-1300 x153

HCG launches new alternative energy certificate broker service

HCG is expanding its commitment to local, alternative energy by launching an Alternative Energy Certificate (AEC) brokerage service, providing additional financial incentives to green heating and cooling system users. 

Anyone who has recently installed, or is considering installing, a renewable heating and cooling system is encouraged to contact HCG to learn how to maximize their clean energy investment. The types of systems that may qualify for this service are: solar hot water, pellet central heating systems, woodchip boilers, compost heat exchange, air source heat pumps, and geothermal. 

Qualified systems installed after January 1, 2015, are eligible to receive retroactive credits. The deadline to submit applications for retroactive credits is March 16, 2018. The Commonwealth’s Alternate Portfolio Standard currently values AECs at approximately $20 each, determined by the open market. 

“HCG’s broker service will ensure that local owners of renewable heating systems maximize their return on investment while keeping all of that savings in the Massachusetts’ economy,” says Sinead Coleman, director of energy operations, HCG.

The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) recently promulgated regulations expanding alternative renewable energy incentives to owners of clean heating and cooling technologies. After registering a system, an owner may receive AECs equal to the energy the system is expected to produce.  

“Conversion away from fossil fuels is now an easy choice,” says Thom Burden, Sandri Energy, the largest distributor of pellet systems in Western MA. “The addition of AECs to pellet central heating installations is a game changer for the future of energy in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.” 

HCG has long been a trusted local resource in the renewable energy credit market. In 2011, HCG established a Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC) program that has since grown to managing over $9.1 million of energy credits for customers in Western Massachusetts. It is easy to register a system as part of the aggregation on the new HCG website. HCG will sell credits through pre-minting, forward minting, or quarterly sales and remit payment to system owners.   

HCG is hosting a webinar on Friday, February 23rd at 8am for installers and professionals in the field to learn more about the technologies that qualify for credits and how to market the new incentives to customers. Please register at 

About us

HCG supports communities by empowering local, sustainable and efficient economies. The organization helps cities and towns, schools, nonprofits and businesses get the most value by pooling their buying power. HCG’s Hampshire Power provides electricity services, including green and locally produced electricity. The HCG Purchasing Co-op makes it easy for towns, cities and nonprofits to save money, time, and effort on major and everyday purchases. And HCG supports communities with its own, uniquely effective service organizations: RSVP of the Pioneer Valley and the Hampshire-Franklin Tobacco-Free Community Partnership. Every cent HCG earns goes back to supporting the communities of Western Massachusetts. HCG is funded by its own revenue.