More Than 5,700 PSNH Customers Impacted by Default of Energy Suppliers

Public Service of New Hampshire employees are working today to transfer the accounts of more than 5,700 customers who have been impacted by the default of their independent energy supplier back to default service with PSNH.

“Our customer service personnel, analysts and IT professionals will work to make the transition seamless,” said Mike Skelton, PSNH spokesman. “Customers will not experience any interruption to their electrical service during the transition.” Thousands of customers of other Northeast Utilities’ subsidiaries in Massachusetts and Connecticut have also been affected by the suspension of the independent energy suppliers.

PSNH was notified on December 24th by ISO New England, the region’s power grid operator, of the default and suspension of the energy suppliers “People’s Power and Gas” and “Easy Energy of Massachusetts.” A suspension by the ISO typically is the result of a supplier not being able to fulfill their responsibility and promises for the energy they need to meet their customers’ demand.

The suspension of these suppliers comes on the heels of a period of extreme volatility in the region’s energy market, which is heavily dependent on natural gas. A fixed and limited supply of natural gas, during a period of heavy seasonal demand, has resulted in recent spikes in the price of electricity. Energy suppliers who have contracts with customers for a fixed, lower price may find themselves in a challenging financial situation. PSNH owns and operates a diverse fleet of power generation facilities, including hydro-electric, wood, coal, oil and natural gas. The company's default energy service charge reflects the actual costs of producing or purchasing the energy it needs to meet customer demand.

This week’s default by People’s Power and Gas and Easy Energy of Massachusetts follows similar default last February by PNE Energy Supply that impacted 8,800 PSNH customers. The default and suspension of PNE in February also followed a period of extreme volatility in the energy market.

New Hampshire Customers of People’s Power and Gas with questions about their account and the status of their energy supplier may contact the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission consumer affairs staff at 1-800-852-3793.