On Thursday, the Massachusetts House and Senate both passed a major new climate bill, An Act Driving Clean Energy and Offshore Wind. The legislation now goes to Governor Baker for signature. The bill is basically what we expected: a combination of the House’s emphasis on offshore wind, the Senate’s emphasis on electric transportation, and some new policies in other areas. Overall, we are very pleased with the 96-page bill. Here are our views on some of the key provisions – and what you can do to get this over the finish line.
On June 30, 2022, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) released the final draft of the Clean Energy and Climate Plan (CECP) for 2025 and 2030. This document outlines the key strategies the Commonwealth will use to reach the statutorily-required 50% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under 1990 levels by 2030. We have been advocating for a strong CECP since the first version was published at the very end of 2020. It includes the "how" on reducing emissions from buildings, transportation, and electric power.
Here’s our take on this final version, and what advocacy is needed moving forward.
Earlier this week, we learned that Connecticut Governor Lamont withdrew his support for the regional Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI). When that news hit, we knew it was going to put pressure on the governors of Massachusetts and Rhode Island to follow suit. On Thursday, a spokesman for Governor Charlie Baker said that Massachusetts will not move forward with TCI because there is no longer a multi-state commitment. We haven’t yet heard from Rhode Island Governor McKee, but we anticipate a similar statement.
There’s so much climate-related news right now that it’s hard to keep up: from the negotiations in Glasgow to the details of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill and the still-to-be-determined future of the Build Back Better Act. But here’s one piece of good news you don’t want to miss: a recent poll demonstrates that the public gets it. We have to phase out gas-powered cars.
From 1982 to 2016, Green Energy Consumers Alliance focused our attention on building energy for homes and businesses. But in 2016, alarmed at the rise in greenhouse gas emissions from cars, we became aware of the potential of vehicle electrification as a measure to reduce those emissions. Since we are an alliance of consumers and, at our core, connect energy users to cleaner options through our program offerings, we looked outside the house and began our Drive Green program in order to educate people about electric vehicles (EVs) and to give them a chance to get one at a more affordable price.
It’s imperative that we all switch from internal combustion engines to electric cars for several compelling reasons. The most important is that reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions enough to save the planet depends upon it. But what’s particularly exciting is: we can magnify the benefits of EVs by managing when we charge them.
We believe electric cars are great. They reduce emissions by about 75-80% compared to gasoline cars. And they cost less to run because it’s cheaper to run on electricity than petroleum and they require less maintenance. But for the time being, without governmental incentives, the cost of the battery generally makes electric vehicles (EVs) cost a bit more upfront. So federal tax credits and state rebates are important for the next few years until battery costs come down a bit more. If you’re in the market for a new car and considering an EV (as you should!), here’s news you can use.
The question “but where will I charge?” is one of the biggest sources of apprehension among potential electric vehicle (EV) owners. We at Mass Energy and People’s Power & Light think it doesn’t need to be. After reading this blog post, we really hope that you’ll come to agree that:
For most of us, charging our electric car at home can be very easy.
Today, there are already a lot of places to charge away from home – probably a lot more than most people think. And they’re easy to find.
More public charging stations are being built every day and there are lots more coming in the next 3-5 years.
You won’t need to charge as often as you think. Today’s all-electrics have such large ranges that you likely won’t need to charge every night, and even the plug-in hybrids available today have ranges that exceed what most of us drive in a day.
We launched Drive Green with Mass Energy and Drive Green with People’s Power & Light in November 2016 and have been rolling along merrily ever since. Here’s what’s new with our program and the world of electric vehicles (EVs) overall.
As you may have heard, the existing federal tax credit of up to $7,500 for electric vehicles (EVs) would be repealed under the tax legislation filed in the U.S. House of Representatives with support from the White House last week. If the tax bill is passed in its current form, the EV tax credit would be available for 2017 purchases but not for 2018 and beyond. We strongly oppose the repeal of the EV tax credit. If you are concerned too, please contact your US Representative and express your feelings. But honestly, we know that the Massachusetts and Rhode Island delegations will be opposed to the tax bill for several reasons.