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New Hampshire

New Hampshire

Incentives/Policies for Energy Efficiency

Printable Version
System Benefits Charge   

Last DSIRE Review: 10/05/2012
Program Overview:
State: New Hampshire
Incentive Type: Public Benefits Fund
Eligible Efficiency Technologies: Unspecified Technologies
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Schools, Utility
Types:Energy efficiency, low-income energy assistance
Total Fund:Approximately $19 million collected annually via surcharge; unspecified amount collected annually via auction proceeds
Charge:1.8 mills per kilowatt-hour ($0.0018/kWh)
Web Site:
Authority 1:
Date Enacted:
Date Effective:
New Hampshire Statutes § 374-F:3 et seq.
Authority 2:
Date Enacted:
Date Effective:
New Hampshire Statutes § 125-O:23

New Hampshire's 1996 electric-industry restructuring legislation authorized the creation of a system benefits charge (SBC) to support energy-efficiency programs and energy-assistance programs for low-income residents. The efficiency fund, which took effect in 2002, is funded by a non-bypassable surcharge of 1.8 mills per kilowatt-hour ($0.0018/kWh) on electric bills. A separate surcharge of 1.5 mills per kWh ($0.0015/kWh) supports low-income energy assistance programs. Approximately $19 million is collected annually to support the efficiency fund, although the annual sum collected has varied in recent years due to changes in the surcharge rate. The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has approved several "core" energy-efficiency programs that receive SBC funding. All efficiency programs are administered by the state's utilities, with oversight from the PUC.

In addition, New Hampshire enacted legislation (H.B. 1490) in June 2012 converting the state's greenhouse gas emissions fund into an energy efficiency fund. As a result, certain proceeds received by the state from emissions auction proceeds will be allocated as an additional source of funding to electric distribution companies for core energy efficiency programs that are funded by SBC funds. It is unclear how much funding will be generated by auction proceeds.

Commercial programs funded by the SBC generally support new construction and major renovations, lighting upgrades, occupancy sensors, controls, air conditioning improvements, programmable thermostats, efficient motors, variable-frequency drives, energy-management systems, LED traffic lights, and custom projects. Residential programs funded by the SBC support Energy Star lighting and appliances, Energy Star new home construction, insulation, thermostats, and other efficiency measures. SBC programs for qualified low-income residents provide funding for insulation, thermostats, lighting upgrades and efficient refrigerators.

The PUC reports the results and effectiveness of the SBC annually to the state’s Legislative Oversight Committee on Electric Restructuring. These annual reports are available on the PUC's web site.

  NH Public Utilities Commission Info (NH PUC)
New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission
Sustainable Energy Division
21 South Fruit St., Suite 10
Concord, NH 03301
Phone: (603) 271-2431
Fax: (603) 271-3868
Web Site:
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.