Massachusetts House Speaker Announces $1 Billion Initiative for Energy Efficiency Grants

March 6, 2019

Massachusetts continues to forge ahead as a leader in clean energy. In an effort to reduce the state’s carbon footprint and minimize waste, Massachusetts State House Speaker Robert DeLeo, (Winthrop-Democrat) recently announced a plan to spend $1 billion over the next decade to build up infrastructure around cities and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The initiative, called GreenWorks, is the latest in a series of climate change-driven initiatives pursued by Massachusetts’ legislature and Republican Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration. Here is what we know about this new program.

Due to the dire United Nations’ warnings regarding Global Climate Change (Oct 2018), many states, businesses, and even homeowners have committed to reducing their carbon footprint. The state of Massachusetts is no exception to this, and is, in fact, setting the pace for change and the legislation to back it up. Speaker DeLeo’s proposed green funding seeks to push communities to consider ways to integrate renewable energy projects in every city, not just in coastal communities that are threatened by eroding beaches and rising sea levels.

According to news outlet NECN, DeLeo said that competitive grants would be available for municipalities to pay for projects like solar power, energy storage, microgrids, and electric car charging stations. If the proposal does become law, the availability of the grants may help nudge communities to pursue renewable energy projects. The plan is that state legislature will take up the debate for the measure this year. Funding for this project will be contingent on the sale of bonds.

Coastal towns are very aware of the devastation that powerful storms can bring due to rising sea levels. Many inland towns and cities are just beginning to understand the ripple effect that global climate change can have on their lives. Together, with the right creative ideas, projects that put these cities and towns on the path to producing fewer carbon emissions will help do our part for the environment.

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