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Environmental, Social & Governance Initiatives

At Eversource, we are proud to be recognized as one of the greenest energy companies in the nation.

Our commitment to sustainability is an important component of our vision for our business today and the future. Our electric, gas and water companies strive to protect the environment while providing the best solutions for our customers and the communities we serve.

Sustainability Governance

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives are integrated into the policies and principles that govern our company and reflect our commitment to sustainable growth.

We are committed to top tier reliability, superior customer service, effective corporate governance, expanding energy options for our region, environmental stewardship, and providing transparency and clarity about our position and our performance on these and other topics.

An Eversource employee in New Hampshire works on repairing power lines damaged by a recent storm.Our Sustainability Steering Committee, comprised of executive level management from key ESG areas, oversees a team of employees who engage with operational and business partners to develop and manage strategic priorities, set sustainability goals and coordinate sustainability reporting.

The sustainability team meets regularly throughout the year to assess current practices and identify improvement opportunities.  

The Board of Trustees, both as a whole and through its committees, is responsible for the oversight of the company’s risk management processes and programs.

Our Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) program applies a well-defined enterprise-wide methodology to allow our Risk Committee, comprised of senior officers of the company, to identify, categorize, prioritize, and mitigate the principal risks to the company.

The ERM program is integrated with other assurance functions throughout the company, including compliance, auditing and insurance, to ensure appropriate coverage of risks that could impact the company.

In addition to known risks, the ERM program identifies emerging risks to the company through participation in industry groups, discussions with management, and in consultation with outside advisers.

Our management then analyzes risks to determine materiality, likelihood and impact, and develops mitigation strategies.

We actively engage with ESG investors and have published a slide presentation specifically to respond to their areas of interest. More than 140 ESG funds include Eversource shares in their portfolios.

Commitment to Environmental Sustainability & Carbon Neutrality

Eversource’s commitment underscores our environmental priorities and highlights our role as a key catalyst for clean energy focusing on climate leadership, clean energy, accountability and stewardship.

Climate Leadership

As a centerpiece of our environmental commitment, we’re dedicating ourselves to an ambitious but attainable target to be carbon neutral by 2030 and help our customers and our region reduce their carbon footprint.

We will achieve this while supporting regional economic growth and without compromising the safe, reliable, affordable service we provide to approximately 4 million customers.

How We’ll Get There

  • Reduce our own energy use by improving the efficiency of our facilities and reducing vehicle emissions from our fleet.
  • Reduce line losses in the electric transmission and distribution system.
  • Reduce sulfur hexafluoride in our electrical gas-insulated switchgear.
  • Upgrade our natural gas distribution system to improve safety and eliminate methane leaks.
  • Increase investments in renewable generation that will further reduce the carbon footprint of our operations.

Impacts on the Region

  • We’re saving our electric customers approximately 1 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year and gas customers over 10 million therms per year through our top-ranked energy efficiency programs.
  • We’re driving alternative fuel vehicle adoption and development of electric vehicle charging networks.
  • We’re developing innovative battery storage projects that reduce the need for fossil fuel-powered generation and new transmission facilities while improving power quality and reliability.

Implementing Strategies to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The carbon intensity of the New England electrical grid is among the lowest in the country and is continuously supported by state reduction goals in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

Each state has its own carbon goal or action plan to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and we work with stakeholders in each agency to contribute to targeted reductions.

State Targeted Reduction
by 2020 (CT, MA) & 2025 (NH)
Targeted Reduction
by 2050
Connecticut 10% Below 1990 Level 80% Below 2001 Level
Massachusetts 25% Below 1990 Level 80% Below 1990 Level
New
Hampshire *
20% Below 1990 Level 80% Below 1990 Level

* Recommendation of the New Hampshire Climate Change Policy Taskforce.

Our strategies focus on reducing our own emissions, helping our customers reduce their energy use, and supporting our region to facilitate achievement of state GHG reduction targets.

Energy Efficiency

Eversource is consistently recognized as a leader in energy efficiency by national industry organizations. We take great pride in helping our communities remain vibrant and successful by designing and delivering programs that are emulated by others across the country.

Our energy efficiency portfolio reflects and responds to the way our customers live and use energy today and takes a multi-year approach that enables us to help customers plan for the future.

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy 2019 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard ranked Massachusetts first and Connecticut sixth in the nation; and Eversource is the number one energy efficiency provider in the nation, according to Ceres’ most recent report, “Benchmarking Utility Clean Energy.”

We invested approximately $500 million a year on average over the past three years on energy efficiency and consider these investments to be the most economical way to reduce our region’s GHG emissions and improve its competitiveness.

Decoupled distribution rates and financial incentives awarded based on the effectiveness of our energy efficiency programs provide us with financial stability.

Methane Emissions Reduction Through Gas Main Replacement Programs

In March 2016, Eversource and almost 40 other American Gas Association members became founding members of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s GHG emission reducing Natural Gas STAR Methane Challenge Program.

In 2018, we set a goal beyond our Methane Challenge program commitment to replace 4.5 percent of our 3,400 miles of bare steel and cast-iron main in 2018 and achieve a 14.5 percent reduction from a 2017 baseline by 2020.

Thanks to our proactive bare steel and cast-iron main replacement program and robust leak mitigation plans, fugitive emissions from the Eversource gas distribution system have steadily decreased over time and are anticipated to continue to decrease.

Since 2011, Eversource has replaced 397 miles of its aged non-cathodically protected steel, cast-iron, and wrought-iron natural gas distribution infrastructure in Connecticut and Massachusetts in accordance with programs approved by state regulators.

We are committed to delivering natural gas safely, reliably and efficiently every day for use by our residential, commercial and industrial customers. Our top priority is the safety of the public, Eversource customers and our employees.

SF6 Reduction Goal

In 2018, we set and achieved an SF6 leak rate voluntary goal of emitting less than 2 percent annually across all three states we operate in, including Connecticut and New Hampshire, which do not currently have SF6 regulatory limits.

Fleet

Eversource is committed to reducing emissions coming from the transportation sector by evaluating and implementing strategic changes to our fleet.

Eversource crews do natural gas repair work in Hyde Park, Massachusetts.Our fleet consists of approximately 5,200 vehicles, including light-duty trucks for meter readers and bucket trucks for line workers.

Along with other utility members of the Edison Electric Institute, we have pledged to commit 5 percent of our annual fleet spend on plug-in electric technologies.

In 2018, we exceeded our goal with over 6 percent of fleet spending going to plug-in electric technologies.

Facilities

Eversource facilities are strategically located throughout our territory to ensure that we best serve our customers.

Our operations have been consolidated for maximum efficiency, and as buildings and spaces are renovated, we seek opportunities to reduce our energy use through energy efficient lighting and equipment, control system upgrades and optimum use of space. Facility goals include:

  • Retro-commissioning projects at Eversource facilities to identify potential energy use reductions by assessing lighting controls, HVAC and other systems to maximize building efficiency.
  • Transitioning 50 percent of our facility square footage to LED lighting from a 2017 baseline by 2020, which involves accelerating the replacement of existing lighting in more than two million square feet of facilities by 2020. By the end of 2018, 22 percent of facility square footage was converted to LED lighting, keeping us on target to achieve our 2020 goal.

Clean Energy

Eversource has established itself as a regional and national leader delivering innovative, forward-looking energy solutions.

We are assisting Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire in meeting their environmental and clean energy goals, while also improving reliability and energy affordability.

As part of its leadership, Eversource partners with like-minded companies and stakeholders to provide the best solutions for our customers and the communities we serve.

Eversource is committed to help the states that we operate in meet Renewable Portfolio Standards, which require a certain percentage of the states’ electricity supply to come from renewable sources.

Renewable Portfolio Standards In Place

State 2018 2020 2025
Connecticut 25% 29% 38%
Massachusetts * 23.62% 27.71% 38.96%
New Hampshire 17.6% 20.7% 25.2%

* The Massachusetts 2025 target is an estimate because the MA Department of Energy Resources does not establish Class II renewable figures until a year before the compliance year.

As New England’s largest utility and dedicated environmental steward, Eversource is committed to bringing more clean, affordable and sustainable energy to the region.

Wind: Eversource and our partner, Ørsted, are the leading developers of offshore wind in the U.S. Our partnership is consistent with Eversource’s efforts to be a catalyst for clean energy development in New England while creating a fundamental change in sourcing electricity in New England. 

The partnership includes three offshore wind leases totaling 557 square miles located south of Rhode Island and Massachusetts with the potential to generate approximately 4,000 MW of offshore wind generating capacity.

The partnership has been awarded long-term contracts for key offshore wind assets in the Northeast including the following:

Project Size - Megawatts (MW) Commercial Operation
South Fork Wind 130 MW End of 2022
Revolution Wind 704 MW Late 2023
Sunrise Wind 880 MW 2024

Solar: Eversource owns and operates 70 MW of solar generation that have the capacity to generate power for more than 11,000 homes.

Natural Gas: We are taking advantage of state initiatives to allow for the expansion of natural gas distribution.

We have also commenced development of two battery storage projects in Massachusetts and have proposed a third project in New Hampshire.

We are also expanding electric vehicle infrastructure, starting with the installation of 3,500 charging ports in Massachusetts by the end of 2020.

Accountability

We hold ourselves accountable for the impact our business might have on the environment, while meeting, and in many cases exceeding, all environmental laws and regulatory commitments and requirements.

We actively work with customers, community members, environmental groups, regulatory agencies, and civic and business partners to promote transparent operations.

Our employees, as well as vendors, suppliers, and contractors, are expected to adhere to all environmental laws as stated in our Code of Business Conduct, Supplier Code of Conduct and procurement process. We are committed to tracking and monitoring our progress via a set of metrics, which receive regular executive leadership review.

We publicly report our emissions and sustainability efforts. We were among the first companies in the country to use standardized reporting templates developed by the Edison Electric Institute and the American Gas Association.

Stewardship

We take great care to promote conservation and responsibly manage natural and cultural resources. We dedicate professional expertise to maintain the integrity and long-term vitality of the land we manage.

Bartlett Cove in ConnecticutWe created the Eversource Land Trust to protect open space and critical resource areas and wildlife habitat. Our focus on environmentally sensitive rights-of-way maintenance practices is designed to minimize impacts to important resource areas and promote critical diverse habitats.

Our vegetation management program is an industry best-practice plan to balance the needs of our customers and communities with the goal of providing safe, reliable electric service for our customers, while monitoring growth of trees around power lines.

We partner with state Historic Preservation and Tribal Historic Preservation offices to identify and protect cultural resources of significance to the environment, meeting, and in many cases exceeding, during construction projects.

Cyber Security

Eversource devotes substantial resources to protecting our cyber and operational assets. Simultaneously, the Board and its Committees continue to provide substantial and focused attention to cyber and system security.

At the Board and Committee level, comprehensive cyber security reports are provided and discussed at each meeting of the Finance Committee, which has primary responsibility for cyber and security oversight at the Committee level.

These reports are provided to all members of the Board and discussed by the Board at the time the Finance Committee Chair reports on the Committee’s meetings. The reports focus on the Company’s most critical assets, describe cyber security drills and exercises, any attempted breaches, and mitigation strategies, including insurance.

In addition, assessments by third-party experts of cyber and physical security risks to the utility industry and the Company in particular are provided periodically.

Additionally, our CEO is involved in the Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council (ESCC), which serves as the principal liaison between the federal government and the electric power industry, with a mission of coordinating efforts to prepare for, and respond to, national-level disasters or threats to critical infrastructure.

The ESCC focuses on actions and strategies that help protect the energy grid, prevent various threats from disrupting electricity, and develop capabilities that help the sector quickly respond and recover when major incidents impact the grid.

Our People

At Eversource, our shared commitment to “Safety First and Always” is a principle and a mindset we weave into the fabric of every job and every task – whether in the field or in the office.

A consistent theme at Eversource is continuous improvement and safety is at the forefront as we continue to build a strong safety culture, embrace new technologies, and learn with our industry and community partners to improve safety performance.

Eversource employees and their families at the Mass General Eversource Everyday Amazing Race.Eversource continues our leadership role within the Edison Electric Institute to improve contractor safety performance, including membership on the executive board of the Electrical Transmission and Distribution OSHA partnership.

This team meets semi-annually and hosts Contractor Safety Summits with electrical contractors from around the country to improve industry-wide safety standards.

Eversource recognizes that an engaged workforce is critical to our mission of delivering reliable energy and a superior customer experience. 

Leaders at all levels strive to create a workplace where our employees advocate for the customer, work collaboratively, raise ideas for improvement and focus on delivering a superior customer experience.

A diverse workforce and inclusive culture contribute to our success and sustainability by driving innovation and creating trusted relationships with employees, customers, suppliers and community partners.

Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) at Eversource is directly aligned with our corporate mission and business objectives to:

  • Attract, develop and retain a diverse workforce that enables us to work together to meet the changing needs of the customers we serve and deliver reliable energy and superior customer service.
  • Create one inclusive workplace where all employees, customers and stakeholders are respected and valued.
  • Leverage the talent, unique perspectives, cultural and life experiences of every employee to ensure our continued success.

Eversource’s executive leadership team, led by the CEO, promotes and supports D&I by building diverse, inclusive work teams with high engagement — growing a pipeline of diverse talent, leveraging multiple perspectives to improve customer service, using diverse suppliers, engaging with multicultural organizations in our communities and supporting the work of the D&I state councils and Business Resource Groups.

Human Resources works closely with Eversource’s executive leadership team to develop and implement D&I goals and drive accountability for D&I progress throughout the company. Eversource's Board of Trustees is committed to diversity and inclusion and receives regular monthly progress updates

We encourage you to read our Eversource Sustainability Report to learn more about our sustainability efforts, including our strong corporate governance, financial performance, and environmental stewardship, as well as how we serve our customers, improve reliability and support our communities.