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Thermal Energy Networks (TENs) State Legislation


  • **S.2995 (2021) An Act Creating A Next-Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy** was the first bill in the nation to allow gas utility companies to pilot networked geothermal.
  • **H.5060 (2022) An Act Driving Clean Energy and Offshore Wind** added provisions specifying that networked geothermal pilots can be funded with funds from their pipe replacement program, the Gas System Enhancement Plan.
  • **H.3203 (2023-2024) An Act Relative to the Future of Clean Heat** proposes several provisions that would authorize, incentivize and finance the transition from gas to non-combusting renewable thermal energy. The bill would:
    • Allow gas companies to sell non-combusting thermal energy in addition to gas and to install the needed infrastructure, including networked ground source heat pumps connected to pipes underneath the streets using their skilled workforce and their existing grants of location in the public rights of way.
    • Permit gas companies to meet the obligation to serve by providing customers with thermal energy, including networked geothermal ground source heat pumps or air source heat pumps.
    • Establish a “thermal transition fund” to finance ongoing TENs installations.
    • Disallow depreciation of new gas infrastructure beyond 2050 in line with Commonwealth’s net-zero emissions mandate.
    • Mandate gas utilities to create gas transition plans to non-combusting thermal energy and to pursue neighborhood-wide electrification projects, allowing municipalities and customers to participate in the planning.



  • **216b.2427 (2021) Natural Gas Innovation Act** encourages gas utilities to propose “innovation plans” that consider alternatives to gas, including electrification, district thermal energy, carbon capture and storage, hydrogen, RNG, energy efficiency, and innovative technologies. Participation is optional and there is no specific timeline for completion.


  • **S9422 (2022) Utility Thermal Energy Network and Jobs Act** enables both gas and electric utilities to build, own, operate, and sell thermal energy. In addition, the bill provides jobs to transitioning utility workers and promotes good jobs for local residents in the expanding decarbonization sector.
  • **S2016A (2023) The NY HEAT Bill** would amend the obligation to serve gas and the 100ft rule subsidy. It would also require that energy bills not exceed 6% of low and moderate-income households’ income.


  • **HB22-1381 (2022) Colorado Energy Office Geothermal Energy Grant Program**
  • **SB22-118 (2022) Encourage Geothermal Energy Use**
  • **HB23-1252 (2023) The Thermal Energy Act** modifies the state’s recent clean heat standard by stipulating that thermal energy networks can be counted as an acceptable “clean heat measure” to help utilities meet their GHG reduction goals. In addition, the law mandates that large gas utilities (serving more than 500,000 customers) propose at least one thermal energy pilot by September 2024. It also establishes labor standards for state or public university-owned thermal energy projects.


Other states have proposed bills related to TENs, but these bills were not passed and will likely be revised and resubmitted. 


  • **HB1589 (2023) Supporting Washington’s clean energy economy and transitioning to a clean, affordable, and reliable energy future** proposed banning utilities with more than 500,000 customers from providing gas services to new construction.


  • **SB 527  (2023) Neighborhood Decarbonization Program** included a priority for a minimum of one networked geothermal, thermal energy network, or closed-loop energy network system project in each of the state’s three largest gas corporations’ service territories. 


  • **HB2875 (2023) Thermal Energy Networks and Jobs Act**  proposed a similar provision to the New York Bill.
  • The climate bill that passed in 2023 includes the study of thermal energy networks and site locations.


  • **H242 (2023) An Act Relating to Thermal Energy Networks** proposed directing the state Public Utility Commission to adopt rules for permitting thermal energy networks and would authorize any entity approved by the Commission, not just existing utilities, to operate geothermal networks as regulated utilities, enabling them to recover their costs through the rates paid by customers.