In his State of the Commonwealth address, Governor Baker committed Massachusetts to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Then three bills touted by Senate leadership as a “next generation climate package” were released from Senate Ways and Means to be debated and voted on before month’s end. From carbon reduction goals to transit electrification and robust energy efficiency, efforts to address climate change in Massachusetts took a couple of steps forward this week. Now comes the work of turning these commitments into climate action!
In November, we wrote about efforts to replenish Massachusetts’ state rebate for electric vehicles, which was then stalled in the legislature. Late the following month, lawmakers reached agreement on a proposed Supplemental Budget that included an infusion of much-needed dollars to bring back Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV), the only direct incentive offered by the state to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles. Now MOR-EV will benefit from an infusion of at least $27 million dollars per year for the next two years!
With innovative clean energy developers, enthusiastic members, amazing staff and board, and awesome volunteers in the mix, our organization's story can be told in what we're grateful for. We hope these stories will inspire you to support our work the same way they have inspired us to persevere.
Here's a quick recap of #7DaysofGratitude (click to read each individual story):
Day 1 - Sumul Shah and Malcolm Brown, wind advocates & developers
Day 2 - Block Island Wind Farm, the first offshore wind farm in the country
Day 3 - John & Claire Fitzmaurice, Joel Golden, and all our other Electric Car Ambassadors
Day 4 - Conservation Law Foundation, our amazing partners
Day 5 - Our hardworking staff and board
Day 6 - Dedicated community organizers working on Green Municipal Aggregation
Day 7 - Ricard Torres Mateluna and Christine Hatch, Heating Oil members who've become as energy efficient as they can!
November 20th marked the end of formal session in Year 1 of Massachusetts’ two-year legislative cycle. The remaining weeks of 2019 are considered “informal session,” during which bills may still be considered and moved, but formal activities not completed by last Thursday are largely on hold until the legislature formally reconvenes in the new year. A proposal to replenish consumer rebates for EVs is included in the supplemental budget (H.4132/S.2418) currently stalled at the State House.
If you’re motivated to learn more about what you can do about the climate crisis as a consumer and a citizen, and what lots of smart, committed activists are doing – then join us at our Fall Meeting, November 19th. This year, we're thrilled to welcome Kelsey Wirth, co-founder of Mothers Out Front, as our featured speaker.
Earlier this week, officials from the Baker administration announced plans to extend Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV) through September 2019 when, absent new funding, the program will come to an end. Eliminating this popular incentive now moves Massachusetts in the wrong direction and will make meeting our ZEV goals (300,000 EVs by 2025) that much more challenging.
Massachusetts lawmakers vote to pass H.4857, An act to advance clean energy. The final bill was released from conference committee late Monday afternoon.
This piece written by Eugenia Gibbons and Deborah Donovan was originally published by Commonwealth Magazine on July 15, 2018.
This piece written by Eugenia Gibbons and Khalida Smalls was originally published by the Barr Foundation. We believe believe that the Massachusetts Energy Efficiency Report's implications also apply to Rhode Island.