On June 25, 2012, NH Governor John Lynch signed legislation adding renewable thermal energy technologies to the state's renewable portfolio standard (RPS), currently set at 23.8 percent by 2025. The new bill requires that utilities source a portion of that 23.8 percent of renewable energy from thermal sources including wood pellet boilers, solar water heating panels and geothermal heating and cooling systems. It sets specific annual targets for renewable thermal energy and ramps up slowly.

New Hampshire is the first state to fully incorporate renewable thermal energy into its RPS program, and grant incentives to biomass, solar and geothermal project developers that are equivalent in value to those for developers of renewable electricity projects. Renewable energy certificates (RECs) will be worth up to $29 per megawatt-hour of useful thermal energy produced by qualified thermal projects, and the program is authorized at least through the year 2025. Rick LaBrecque of PSNH said that by the time the program sunsets in 2025, it would cost NH ratepayers about $9 million or about $.50 per month on an average household bill.

For more information, see http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2012/06/hew-hampshire-sets-thermal-renewable-energy-carve-out?cmpid=WNL-Wednesday-June27-2012.