Kenneth L. Kimmell was appointed in January 2011 as Commissioner of the MassDEP by Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Richard K. Sullivan Jr. Since the time of his appointment, MassDEP has launched a clean energy results program to focus on the permitting and siting of clean energy facilities, such as anaerobic digesters, which tap the hidden energy value of organic waste; announced completion of a sustainable water management initiative framework to balance competing human needs for water and the long-term health of Massachusetts rivers and streams; completed a top-to-bottom review of all of MassDEP's permit programs and identified over twenty regulatory changes to streamline permitting; and commenced an overhaul of MassDEP's information technology systems to make the agency more efficient, transparent, and accessible to the regulated community and the public. Mr. Kimmell has been elected Chair of the Board of Directors of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, Inc., the nation’s first mandatory greenhouse gas cap and trade program, and was instrumental in the recent nine-state agreement to strengthen RGGI by lowering the cap on carbon dioxide emissions. Mr. Kimmell is also active in efforts to promote RGGI as a national model for reducing greenhouse gases in a cost-effective manner.
Mr. Kimmell joined the Patrick Administration in January 2007 as general counsel of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. In that capacity, he focused on major legislative initiatives, such as the merger of energy and environmental agencies into one secretariat; the Green Communities Act, the Global Warming Solutions Act, and the Oceans Act; state and federal permitting of the Cape Wind project, the nation's first off-shore wind project; and development and early implementation of policy initiatives such as the MEPA Greenhouse Gas policy, a first-in-the-nation policy that requires developers of major projects to identify, avoid, and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.
Prior to joining the Patrick Administration, Mr. Kimmell was in private practice and focused on environmental and land use law and litigation.
Mr. Kimmell graduated from Wesleyan University and UCLA School of Law. He lives in Newton, where he has served on the Newton Community Preservation Act Committee. He is also a former Board Member of the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions.