Driving Decarbonization: How the Sponsors of Mass Save® led Massachusetts to a record-setting year for heat pump adoption.

February 26, 2024

Heat pumps have quickly gained in popularity across New England as efficient tools to slash carbon emissions both for cooling and heating. And yes, they’re holding up quite well in our bitter winters. This news is catching on fast in Massachusetts. We’re proud to share that a record number of residential customers opted to make the switch to heat pumps in 2023, thanks in part to the incentives we provide our customers through the Mass Save programs. We’re not just breaking records in the Commonwealth; we’re leading New England in heat pump adoption.

Let’s take a look at the numbers: in 2023 the Sponsors supported the installation of heat pumps in more than 28,084 Massachusetts homes, exceeding the annual residential goal outlined in the Massachusetts Three-Year Energy Efficiency Plan by nearly 40%. Further, 60% of those installations were ‘full displacements,’ showing that the Mass Save programs are driving deep decarbonization at each home. Year after year, the numbers continue to grow. Since 2019, the Sponsors have supported the installation of 95,608 heat pumps in over 75,172 homes and businesses across the state.

No matter how you crunch or examine the numbers, the data tells one clear story: Massachusetts is New England’s leader when it comes to heat pump installation. In Massachusetts, we report the number of homes and businesses with heat pumps installed, whereas other states like Vermont count the number of compressors installed (including the potential of more than one per home/business) and the state of Maine counts one heat pump as equivalent to 25.1 MMBTUs.

If we boil these down to apples-to-apples comparisons, Massachusetts is the clear frontrunner. First, applying Vermont’s methodology, Massachusetts surpasses Vermont’s heat pump installations - installing 95,608 heat pumps since the beginning of 2019 compared with 63,000 in Vermont since 2015. Applying a similar logic to Maine’s methodology of MMBTUs, Massachusetts again leads the pack. By that logic, we have supported the installation of up to 264,000 heat pumps since the start of 2019 compared with 115,442 heat pumps in Maine.

Massachusetts also has an especially proactive approach to ensuring that homes receiving heat pumps are properly weatherized—which makes heat pumps less expensive to install and operate while increasing environmental benefits. Since 2013, we have weatherized nearly 350,000 homes, with 3,000 more served each month. Most of the homes receiving heat pumps in 2023 were weatherized. Our focus is not just on heat pump installation numbers, but on working to ensure they are installed in an optimized way.

This success was accomplished in partnership with more than 1,500 members of the Mass Save Heat Pump Installer Network (HPIN). Established in 2022, the network empowers contractors to gain the tools, training and marketing support needed to offer heat pump installations as part of their service portfolio.

When it comes to heat pump adoption – we’re all in. The Sponsors of Mass Save are committed to supporting continued adoption by all customers across the Commonwealth. We’re just getting started.

To learn more about how you can leverage Mass Save rebates and incentives when installing heat pumps, please visit https://www.masssave.com/heatpump.