Progress toward 2020 GHG Emissions Reduction Goal

At this time, only Clean Energy and Climate Plan transportation policies that pertain to vehicles and fuels can be accurately tracked at this time.  Unfortunately, a lack of data precludes reporting of progress on those polices that pertain to reducing driving via better development patterns, a situation staff is working to resolve.   

Progress Compared to GHG Emissions in the State

Due to a combination of factors, including policies being pursued by the Commonwealth and the recession, greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector as calculated from the amount of fuel consumed have fallen since they peaked in 2005. They remain slightly higher than emissions in 1990 and the level anticipated in the Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 (“2020 Plan”). While this is good news, vigilance will be required going forward to ensure that transportation sector emissions continue their downward trajectory.

2020 Plan Strategies for GHG Emissions Reduction

Strategy (with link to
background information
from the 2020 Plan)
Federal and California Vehicle Efficiency and GHG Standards for Light Duty Vehicles (includes Reducing GHG from Vehicle A/C) pdf format of fed-ca-standards-light-duty.pdf
High Policies reliant on Federal standards & MA adoption of CA standards remain on track to produce expected GHG reductions.
Federal Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium and Heavy Duty Vehicles pdf format of fed-standards-heavy-duty.pdf
 HighPolicies reliant on Federal standards & MA adoption of CA standards remain on track to produce expected GHG reductions.
Federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and Regional Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) pdf format of rfs-lcfs.pdf
Medium for RFS, Low for LCFSAlthough some progress has been made, estimated GHG reductions from the federal RFS program for MA are likely to be lower than estimated. The Regional Low Carbon Fuel Standard is on hold. Despite favorable resolution of CA lawsuit, Regional Low Carbon Fuel Standard not making progress.
Clean Car Consumer Incentives pdf format of clean-cars.pdf
 MediumStrategy replaced with MA Electric Vehicle Initiative. Task Force convened, incentive program created, grants provided for vehicles & charging stations.  Originally intended incentives untenable.  Supplemental strategy working effectively in lieu.  GHG benefits realized vs. forecast in CECP not known.
(pilot program, possible expansion later) LowStudy to measure how financial incentives impact MA Motorists’ driving habits announced after long delay.  Strategy unlikely to realize anticipated GHG reductions. 
GreenDOT pdf format of green-dot.pdf
 MediumImplementation Plan issued.  MassDOT Divisions incorporating Tasks & Indicators into work plans, including goal of tripling foot, transit, and bike travel.  Healthy Transportation Directive issued speeding implementation.The State Smart Transportation Initiative is assisting MassDOT in developing and implementing metrics to track implementation of GHG reduction measures.
Smart Growth Policy Package pdf format of smart-growth.pdf
file size 1MB (includes Sustainable Development Principles) MediumCommon Vision for Growth issued by EEA, EOHED, & MassDOT to guide planning & investment.  Regional planning efforts progressing. While good policies are in place progress toward land use & GHG goals unknown due to lack of data. Funding is being pursued to gather land use/land cover data necessary to measure the efficacy of land use and tree retention policies.

Supplemental Strategies for GHG Emissions Reduction

Supplemental StrategyPotential for GHG Emissions ReductionsNotes
ModerateOn Earth Day 2013, the $2.5 million dollar Massachusetts Electric Vehicle Incentive Program was  launched.
SmallThis policy is still in the “idea” stage.  Action has not been taken on this potential supplemental policy.
ModerateIn June 2013, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, and MassDOT issued a Common Vision for Growth embracing the MA Sustainable Development Principles and the Planning Ahead approach.
ModerateThe Administration released a proposal for the next generation of transportation investment in the Commonwealth: The Way Forward: A 21st Century Transportation Plan and budget proposals to meet the needs identified in this plan. The House and Senate both provided additional funding in their budget, but not in the amount proposed by the Governor.