State and Local Policy Database

New Hampshire

State Scorecard Rank


New Hampshire

20.0Scored out of 50Updated 9/2016
State Government
Score: 3.5 out of 6
State Government Summary List All

The state offers several financial incentives for energy efficiency investments, including PACE financing. The state government leads by example by requiring efficient buildings and fleets, benchmarking public buildings, and encouraging energy savings performance contracts. 

Financial Incentives List All

Financial Incentive information for New Hampshire is provided by the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE New Hampshireand State Energy Office contacts. Information about additional incentives not present on DSIRE is listed here. In addition to the state-funded incentives on DSIRE and below, New Hampshire has enabled Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing and has one active program. For additional information on PACE, visit PACENation.

New Hampshire Better Buildings Program: Managed by the NH Community Development Finance Authority under contract with the Office of Energy and Planning, this revolving loan fund is set up to serve residential customers through loans for multifamily efficiency projects, renewable energy projects, or an interest-rate buydown program for utilities when they do Home Performance with Energy Star projects.

Last Updated: July 2017

Building Energy Disclosure List All

There is no disclosure policy in place.

Last Updated: July 2017

Public Building Requirements List All

Since 2004, New Hampshire has been working to improve energy usage in state buildings. Executive Order 2004-7 (2004) authorized a committee to develop an energy reduction goal and plan, a procedure for conducting audits of facilities that score between 40 and 60 on the ENERGY STAR benchmarking system, new energy efficiency standards for new construction, and a procedure for commissioning new facilities that ensures adoption of energy-efficient design specifications and equipment operations.

In 2009, SB73 mandated that all agencies enter energy, water, and sewer data into a statewide tracking database in order to assess progress and properly benchmark success.

New Hampshire law (RSA 155-A:13) requires that any state owned building that is newly constructed, reconstructed, altered or renovated such that it constitutes a major project, must meet a high performance design standard. The incremental costs related to any energy efficiency and sustainable design features may be recouped over a 10 year period.

Executive Order 2011-01 called for a 25% reduction in fossil fuel energy usage in state buildings by 2025 and a system to track and benchmark progress toward this goal.  The significant energy efficiency efforts and results thus far have already reduced fossil fuel energy use by 21% per square foot in state buildings.

On May 6, 2016 Governor Hassan signed Executive Order 2016-03 setting new, aggressive goals for state government on energy efficiency, conservation and renewable energy. Executive Order 2016-03 requires all state agencies that are financially responsible for utility expenses to report energy use and cost using the statewide energy database. This Executive Order recognizes the significant energy efficiency efforts and results thus far have already reduced fossil fuel energy use by 21% per square foot in State Buildings and sets new savings targets for State Vehicle Fleet and State Building energy use. Further, it sets updated goals of reducing fossil fuel use at state-owned facilities by 30 percent by 2020, 40 percent by 2025 and 50 percent by 2030, compared to a 2005 baseline; reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the state passenger vehicle fleet by 30 percent on a metric-ton basis by 2030, as compared to a 2010 baseline; enhancing construction and renovation standards; and increasing management and tracking of energy consumption. This executive order supersedes Executive Order 2011-01.

95% of state building square footage is benchmarked in a NH specific database. This refers to state-owned facilities only. The state also leases space and plans to start benchmarking these facilities in fiscal year 2018.

Last Updated: July 2017

Fleets List All

Executive Order 2016-03 sets updated goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the state passenger vehicle fleet by 30 percent on a metric-ton basis by 2030, as compared to a 2010 baseline. This executive order supersedes Executive Order 2011-01, which required every state agency to comply with the Clean Fleets Program (CFP).

Last Updated: July 2017

Energy Savings Performance Contracting List All

Section 21-I:19-d allows state agencies and municipalities to enter into energy performance contracts (EPCs), requires an RFP (Request for Proposals) process, and provides criteria for selecting energy services companies. It also requires state agencies to submit their recommendations to a multi-agency scoring team to review and score proposals. The state recently completed a major ESPC for its largest office campus in Concord, NH including energy efficiency improvements, installation solar PV and construction of a biomass boiler.  The project was completed in August 2016.  A second ESPC has also been completed for the State-run ski area, Cannon Mountain that included efficiency upgrades to their snowmaking process.  The Department of Administrative Services has entered into a third RFP for an ESPC for 28 buildings in Concord that is currently in the audit phase of the contract.  DAS also developed a tool kit for state agencies to use and they are exploring ways to increase their capacity to administer more ESPCs. 

Last Updated: July 2017

Research & Development List All

No public research centers have a focus on energy efficiency.

Last Updated: July 2017

Important Links List All
Score: 4 out of 8
Buildings Summary List All

Residential and commercial buildings must comply with the 2009 IECC, the latter with reference to ASHRAE 90.1-2007. The state has complete a gap analysis and compliance roadmap, and also has an active stakeholder group dedicated to building energy codes.

Residential Codes List All

Effective April 1, 2010, the New Hampshire State Building Code for residential buildings is based on the 2009 IECC, with state-specific amendments. The code is mandatory statewide. The NH Building Code Review Board is currently reviewing the 2015 IECC.

Although New Hampshire is not a home rule state, statutes allow municipalities to adopt amendments and codes provided they exceed the State Building Code. The town of Durham has adopted the 2015 IECC energy code (strengthened).

Last Updated: August 2017

Commercial Code List All

Effective April 1, 2010, the New Hampshire State Building Code for commercial buildings is based on the 2009 IECC with references to ASHRAE 90.1-2007. The code is mandatory statewide. The NH Building Code Review Board is currently reviewing the 2015 IECC.

Last Updated: August 2017

Compliance List All
  • Gap Analysis/Strategic Compliance Plan: In collaboration with BCAP, the Office of Energy and Planning published a gap analysis in 2011. The NH Energy Code Compliance Roadmap was completed in 2012 as part of the NH Energy Code Compliance project, initiated by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
  • Baseline & Updated Compliance Studies: NA
  • Utility Involvement: The Public Utilities Commission allows the Utilities to provide trainings using some of the funds derived from the Systems Benefit Charge. The state’s largest utility is actively involved in supporting energy code compliance through trainings, on behalf of all major utilities. 
  • Stakeholder Advisory Group: The NH Building Energy Code Compliance Collaborative was established as part of the NH Energy Code Challenge, which is a stakeholder group of diverse professionals and individuals from a broad range of industries.
  • Training/Outreach: In conjunction with utilities, four training sessions were held in spring 2016.  Four additional trainings are scheduled for the fall of 2016. A complete list of training programs conducted in 2016 are provided in the 2016 Final Quarterly Report.

Last Updated: July 2017

Score: 1 out of 4
CHP Summary List All

The state includes CHP as an eligible resource within its renewable energy standard, but otherwise has limited policies to encourage CHP. No new CHP systems were installed in 2016.

Interconnection StandardsList All

Policy: New Hampshire Interconnections Standard

Description: The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (PUC) established interconnection rules for net-metered systems up to 1 MW in January 2001. Systems that connect to the grid using inverters that meet IEEE 1547 and UL 1741 safety standards do not require an external disconnect device. However, the customer-generator assumes all risks and consequences associated with the absence of a switch. Utilities may not require customer-generators to perform additional tests, or pay for additional interconnection-related charges. Insurance is not required.

Last Updated: June 2016

Encouraging CHP as a ResourceList All

There are currently no state policies designed to acquire energy savings from CHP (like other efficiency resources) or energy generation from CHP (in terms of kWh production) that apply to all forms of CHP.

Last Updated: June 2016

Deployment IncentivesList All

Incentives, grants, or financing: Commercial CHP projects may be eligible for financing assistance through New Hampshire’s Clean Energy Fund, which is a $6 million revolving loan program administered by the Community Development Finance Authority (CDFA).

Net metering: As a result of 2011 legislation (H.B. 381), small CHP systems between 1kW and 30kW may net meter their electricity, provided they have system fuel efficiencies of 80% or greater. Systems between 30kW and 1MW may net meter, provided they meet a fuel system efficiency level of 65%. All told, CHP may only account for up to 2MW of all net metered electricity in the state, which is capped at a 50MW capacity limit. Any customer net excess generation (NEG) during a billing cycle is credited to the customer's next bill and carried forward indefinitely. At the end of a 12-month period, customers may choose to receive payment for any NEG at the utility's avoided-cost rate.

Last Updated: June 2016

Additional Supportive PoliciesList All

Some additional supportive policies exist to encourage CHP in New Hampshire. The state’s  Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), applicable only to systems fueled by renewable resources such as biomass or biogas, requires that 23.8% of electricity sold to end-use customers be supplied by renewable energy or an equivalent (via trading) by 2025. Resources are separated into four tiers, and new renewable-powered CHP would likely fall within Tier 1.

Last Updated: June 2016

Score: 9.5 out of 20
Utilities Summary List All

New Hampshire's regulated electric distribution utilities jointly develop and offer their customers energy efficiency programs under a statewide umbrella program, NHSaves. These programs are funded via a system benefits charge included in customer rates. Each year, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission reviews and approves program plans and budgets submitted by the utilities. Utilities can earn performance incentives based on successful implementation of their programs and meeting performance goals. Recently, additional funding for New Hampshire’s “core” customer energy efficiency programs is provided via the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). The legislation governing RGGI requires that the first dollar from the sale of greenhouse gas allowances is to go to fund electric energy efficiency programs.

In addition to funding via a System Benefits Charge (SBC) and Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), electric energy efficiency programs are also funded via ISO-NE Forward Capacity Revenues (FCM). In 2014, ISO-NE FCM revenues were approximately $2.6 million; and, in 2015, ISO-NE FCM revenues were approximately $2.4 million.

Natural gas efficiency programs are not part of NHSaves. New Hampshire natural gas utilities administer energy efficiency programs that are approved by the New Hampshire PUC and funded via the Local Distribution Adjustment Clause (LDAC).

In August 2016, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission approved a settlement agreement establishing a statewide EERS targeting overall cumulative savings of 3.1% of electric sales and 2.25% of gas sales by 2020.

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Last Updated: July 2017

Customer Energy Efficiency Programs List All

New Hampshire restructured its electric utility markets and has maintained support for its utility energy efficiency programs. In Order No. 23,574, issued November 2000, the Commission emphasized its commitment to energy efficiency programs that complement new energy markets and do not hinder their development. The Commission requested that utilities work together to design a set of "core" programs that are consistent in their design and meet the Legislature's directive to target cost-effective opportunities that may otherwise be lost due to market barriers.

On May 31, 2002, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission issued Order No. 23,982 in Docket No. DE 01-057, approving the implementation of “core” energy efficiency programs by the state’s electric utilities. This order established the basis for the NHSaves statewide energy efficiency program.

The PUC reviews and authorizes the utilities’ joint program plans and budgets annually. The utilities offer joint, statewide programs to gain the benefits of uniform planning, delivery, and evaluation. Within the umbrella of a statewide program, however, each individual utility incorporates flexibility in its implementation strategies and program delivery. The statewide program, NHsaves, uses shared marketing and information materials. NHSaves is funded by a systems benefits charge included in customer rates, of which 1.8 mills/kWh is for energy efficiency.

Natural gas programs are funded by a Local Distribution Adjustment Clause.

Additional funding for New Hampshire’s “core” customer energy efficiency programs is provided via the “Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative” (RGGI). The legislation governing RGGI requires that the first dollar from the sale of greenhouse gas allowances is to go to fund electric energy efficiency programs.

Some of New Hampshire’s publicly owned utilities (coops and municipal utilities) also offer customer energy efficiency programs, such as financing options for energy-efficient products. 

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Last Updated: July 2017

Energy Efficiency as a Resource List All

Expected kWh/KW savings from NH energy efficiency programs are incorporated into the ISO-NE Regional System Plan (RSP). ISO-NE provides forward capacity market (FCM) revenues.

Last Updated: July 2017

Energy Efficiency Resource Standards List All

Summary: Incremental electric savings of 0.8% in 2018, ramping up to 1.0% in 2019, and 1.3% in 2020. Natural gas savings of 0.7% in 2018, 0.75% in 2019, and 0.8% in 2020.

In August 2016, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission approved an EERS to help the state achieve the objectives set out in its 10-year State Energy Strategy. Commission-approved energy efficiency programs will be implemented in accordance with this framework beginning January 1, 2018. The EERS has an overarching goal of achieving all cost-effective energy efficiency, which it hopes to achieve incrementally through a framework of three-year planning periods. During the first three-year period, the cumulative goal for electric savings will be 3.1% of delivered 2014 kWh sales, with interim annual savings goals of 0.80%, 1.0%, and 1.3%. The cumulative goal for gas savings will be 2.25% of delivered MMBtu 2014 sales, with interim annual savings goals of 0.70%, 0.75%, and 0.80%. Funding for the EERS will come from increases to the system benefits charge (SBC) and the local distribution adjustment charge (LDAC), both current components of electric and gas bills, respectively.

The New Hampshire Senate passed HB 1129 in 2014, calling for the development of long term goals that take into account and complement any goals developed by the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission. In February 2015, NHPUC staff issued a straw proposal for an EERS for the period 2015-2025. For electricity savings, staff assumed a gradual increase in savings from 2015 to 2025 and determined total savings of about 9.76% of 2012 kWh electrical usage were attainable over the period.

In December 2015, testimony was filed proposing frameworks and general terms for the implementation of an EERS in New Hampshire. A Settlement Agreement, including the establishment of an EERS, was approved by the Commission in Order No. 25,932 in August 2016. Utilities are expected to provide EERS filings for 2018-2020 in September 2017.

For more information on Energy Efficiency Resource Standards, click here.

Last Updated: July 2017

Utility Business Model List All

The New Hampshire PUC issued an order in January 2009 allowing electric and natural gas utilities to propose rate design mechanisms to promote energy efficiency in future rate cases on a case-by-case basis. The Commission listed three primary options: (1) performance incentives, (2) rate design (decoupling), and (3) reconciling rate adjustment mechanisms (either partial or full).

As part of an August 2016 Settlement Agreement, it was recommended the Commission implement a lost revenue adjustment mechanism (LRAM) to take effect January 1, 2017. The LRAM will be calculated by dividing the projected cumulative lost distribution revenue associated with energy efficiency savings for a given period by the projected billed consumption for the period in which they would be recovered. In each calendar year, for each utility, the savings for which lost revenue may be recovered will be capped at 110% of planned savings. Settling Parties agreed that the LRAM for each utility will cease when a new decoupling mechanism, or other mechanism as an alternative to the LRAM, is implemented.

The Settlement Agreement also recommended, and the Commission approved, that performance incentive levels going forward will be identical for electric and gas utilities. The maximum was reduced from 10% to 6.875%, with a target of 5.5% upon implementation of the LRAM in 2017. The cap and target shall remain at 6.875% and 5.5%, respectively through at least the first triennium of the EERS.

Last Updated: July 2017

Evaluation, Measurement, & Verification List All
  • Cost-effectiveness test(s) used: TRC
  • Uses a deemed savings database: no

Utilities are working with regulatory staff on development of an energy efficiency program evaluation plan that can be clearly understood by regulators, policy makers, utility evaluation staff, program administrators, and other stakeholders, incorporating the recommendations of the TecMarket Works 2014 six-year evaluation plan report. The plan includes: (a) a statement of the specific objectives and priorities developed through research and analysis that guided the development of the EM&V plan, (b) a detailed description of evaluation projects and budgets for the 2015-2016 Core-energy efficiency program implementation period, and (c) specific evaluation projects and assigned priorities that can be completed by January 1, 2020.

The evaluation of ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs in New Hampshire relies on legislative mandates (SB 323) and on regulatory orders, such as Order No. 25,976 for 2017 programs. Evaluations are mainly administered by the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission. New Hampshire has formal requirements for evaluation articulated in Docket DE 05-157, Order 24,599. Statewide evaluations are conducted. In terms of a benefit-cost test, the Total Resource Cost (TRC) is used and is considered to be the primary test for decision making. The benefit-cost tests are required for total program and individual measure-level screening. The rules for benefit-cost tests are stated in Order 23,574. Some exceptions exist for low-income programs, pilots, and new technologies.

Last Updated: July 2017

Guidelines for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs List All

Requirements for State and Utility Support of Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

In August 2016, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission approved a settlement agreement in Order No. 25,932, establishing a statewide energy efficiency resource standard (EERS) targeting overall cumulative savings of 3.1% of electric sales and 2.25% of gas sales by 2020. The agreement also provides for an increase in the minimum low-income share of the overall energy efficiency budget from 15.5% to 17%. As proposed, the increase would take effect on January 1, 2017, and remain in effect through the first three-year period of the EERS. During that time, the Settling Parties will explore additional funding sources to augment ratepayer funding.

Cost-Effectiveness Rules for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

The August 2016 settlement agreement notes that prior to the filing of the first EERS plan, the Settling Parties would review the existing performance incentives formula and consider the way it values achievements of low-income programs.

New Hampshire uses the total resource cost (TRC) test framework for all programs, including low-income programs. However, the commission recognizes low-income benefits and low-income programs that do not screen with benefit-cost ratios greater than 1.0 may still be approved if the programs are otherwise well designed. New Hampshire had a 15% environmental adder, but now treats those costs as internalized. In New Hampshire, utilities coordinate with the CAP agencies that implement the state/federal weatherization assistance program for mutual leveraging.

Coordination of Ratepayer-Funded Low-Income Programs with WAP Services

Efforts to deliver low-income programs are coordinated with Community Action Agencies. Annual electric and MMBtu savings are revised to reflect current projects modeled by the CAAs.

Last updated: July 2017

Self Direct and Opt-Out Programs List All

New Hampshire does not have self-direct or opt-out programs.

Last updated: July 2017

Data AccessList All

Guidelines for Third Party Access

Docket DR 96-150 does not require utilities to release energy use data to third parties, but it does facilitate the transfer of data by establishing an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) working group. Customer authorization for this access is required (NH Code of Adm. Rules, PUC 2003.01). With customer authorization, suppliers can access Eversource's large customers' interval via a software package called Energy Profiler Online (EPO). Other utilities provide usage data via alternative formats.

Requirements for Provision of Energy Data

New Hampshire has no requirements for the provision of energy use data, but all utilities provide small businesses or residential customers with their usage data either via a request to customer service or for some utilities via a secure sign on. Utilities will also provide usage data to the owners of multi-tenant buildings and town officials upon request.

Energy Use Data Availability

Large customers of all utilities can receive their usage data in electronic format, by request via Customer Service or their account executive. 

Last Updated: July 2017

Score: 2 out of 10
Transportation Summary List All

The state integrates transportation and land-use planning, but has not otherwise pursued policies to encourage efficient transportation systems.

Tailpipe Emission Standards List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: July 2017

Transportation System Efficiency List All

Transportation and Land use Integration: New Hampshire's State Development Plan aims to maximize compact, sustainable developments across the state through the implementation of key smart growth principles in the project planning and execution stages.

VMT Targets: No policy in place or proposed.

Complete Streets: No policy in place or proposed.

FAST Freight Plans and Goals: No freight plan or goals in place.

Last Updated: July 2017

Transit Funding List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: July 2017

Incentives for High-Efficiency Vehicles List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: July 2017

Equitable Access to TransportationList All
New Hampshire does not have any state programs in place to incentivize the creation of low-income housing near transit facilities, nor does it consider the proximity of transit facilities when distributing federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to qualifying property owners. Last Updated: July 2017
Appliance Standards
Score: 0 out of 2
Appliance Standards Summary List All

Policy: R.S.A. 339-G, Minimum Efficiency Standards for Certain Products

Description: In 2008, New Hampshire introduced appliance standards for four products through the passing of SB 259, codified as R.S.A 339-G. The legislation set standards for bottle-type water dispensers, commercial hot-food holding cabinets, residential furnaces, and furnace fans. The standards became effective January 1, 2009. New Hampshire had its standards for furnaces preempted by federal standards in 2013 and furnace fans in 2017. Otherwise, its remaining two standards have not yet been preempted.

Last Updated: July 2017