The Department of Energy Resources is in the process of making information about municipal aggregation more accessible and understandable for communities.

With an aggregation program, a municipality purchases electricity in bulk from a competitive supplier on behalf of customers in the community, offering more competitive pricing, higher renewable energy content, and relative price stability. Aggregation has become an important local option for Massachusetts municipalities since 1997, as the number of communities with active aggregation programs continues to grow.

On Nov. 15, the department released a draft of its Municipal Aggregation Manual and Best Practices Guide, which was available for public comment through Dec. 7.

Most comments submitted by individuals and organizations underlined the necessity of creating such a comprehensive document to explain municipal aggregation — particularly given the recent spike in basic service rates. Commenters sought more detailed information, not only for communities looking to launch an aggregation program, but for those who are approaching the end of their current contract or are amending their program’s offerings.

The department’s draft manual and best practices guide highlights the importance of goal setting. Goals such as longer-term price certainty, increased renewable energy content, and consumer protection should be considered throughout the program formation process. In comments on the draft, the Local Energy Aggregation Network said goal setting is “a cornerstone topic for the evolution of aggregation across the country.”

The department has created a Municipal Aggregation Manual & Best Practices Guide Public Comments website. The MMA’s comments are also available on

The MMA also offers the MunEnergy program to help members stabilize energy costs and simplify energy management.

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