Recently I was asked by the Boston Globe to write 350 words on why the Mass Save energy efficiency program should phase out rebates for new oil-fired systems for heat and hot water. Another writer took the opposite view and readers were invited to vote for their preferred argument. The Globe’s request was reasonable and so I wrote my piece, but in this expanded blog, I can better address some important points in the discussion.
As mayors representing a diverse group of communities across Massachusetts, we are in a unique position to be on the front lines of how the big global issues manifest from block to block in our neighborhoods. One of the many ways we see this is in how our residents want to power their homes and businesses. Their message to us is clear: they want cost-effective solutions that speed our transition to clean and renewable energy, and they want innovative and meaningful ways to help them combat the climate crisis.
As frequent readers of our blog will know, transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Massachusetts. The cars, trucks, and buses on our roads are also responsible for pollution that causes direct and widespread harm to human health – harm that disproportionately impacts low-income communities and communities of color. Right now, there’s something you can do about it: get your legislator to attend an upcoming briefing on bills that will work on these issues!
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.
If you’re like 99% of Massachusetts and Rhode Island drivers, the car you own now has an internal combustion engine (ICE) that runs on gasoline. Now might be a smart time to trade in your gas-powered car for an EV. Here’s why.
In addition to our BIG DEAL panel on Phasing Out Gasoline later this month, we've got awesome webinars coming up on climate policy, installing solar, and electric cars. And they're all free!
As wind and solar projects proliferate and people acknowledge the benefits of renewable energy, more consumers are voluntarily choosing 100 percent green power. Some have done that through our Green Powered program and others through their city or town municipal aggregations (also known as community choice programs). If you are in that growing minority, we applaud you. But please consider going above and beyond 100%. This blog explains why and how easy it is to do.
When we talk about the intersection of transportation and the environment, we’re often talking about greenhouse gases, like carbon dioxide and methane, that trap heat in the atmosphere and warm our climate. However, the combustion of fossil fuels also releases co-pollutants – like nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, and particulate matter – that form ozone and smog and make air unhealthy. Unlike greenhouse gases, which contribute to global climate change no matter where they’re released, co-pollutants have the biggest impact in the communities close to where they’re emitted.