Patrick-Murray Administration Celebrates 98 Stimulus-Funded Clean Energy Projects in Greater Boston and Northeastern Massachusetts
Marking the two-year anniversary of the federal Recovery Act, Lowell event highlights energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in nearly four dozen cities and towns
LOWELL - March 7, 2011 - The Patrick-Murray Administration today marked the two-year anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) by highlighting $23.6 million in investments in 98 clean energy projects in cities and towns throughout Greater Boston and northeastern Massachusetts. The Administration's investments in the region are financing projects that have employed over 500 people and are expected to yield over five megawatts (MW) of new renewable energy capacity, while saving through efficiency enough energy to power and heat more than 3,000 New England homes annually.
Massachusetts Energy Undersecretary Phil Giudice joined state, federal and local officials today at the United Teen Equality Center (UTEC) in Lowell to celebrate the projects, which are among more than 300 clean energy initiatives across Massachusetts financed through the Patrick-Murray Administration's investment of nearly $70 million in ARRA funds since the Act took effect in February 2009. UTEC, a youth drop-in center offering workforce development and educational programs, received $1.9 million in Recovery funds to install energy efficiency measures projected to cut energy consumption in half.
"The innovative, expeditious and prudent investment of Recovery Act dollars in diverse projects across this region is further illustration that Massachusetts is a national clean energy leader," said Undersecretary Giudice of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA). "From solar arrays at Logan Airport, the Greater Boston Food Bank, and the Northeastern Correctional Center in Concord to efficiency projects in schools and municipal buildings and a nation-leading efficiency overhaul at a low-income apartment complex in Boston, this region of the state is blazing a path to a clean energy future."
Recovery Act projects in the region are also leveraging additional public and private clean energy investments of $146.3 million.
"The results of the Recovery Act effort here in Massachusetts are impressive," said Jeffrey A. Simon, Director of the Massachusetts Recovery and Reinvestment Office. "Nearly every part of state government has been involved. We've invested in education, in broadband access, alternative energy, water and wastewater plants. Housing projects that will be home to over 63,000 have been funded and 95 road and bridge projects are either complete or underway. Most importantly, 70,000 people in Massachusetts have received a Recovery Act-funded paycheck over the last two years. It should come as no surprise that Massachusetts is leading the country out of the recession."
"Real investments like those we've seen develop in the past two years across Boston and northeast Massachusetts will help us harness our $6 trillion energy economy and create the clean energy technology jobs of tomorrow that will put people to work and keep our state on the cutting edge," said US Senator John Kerry.
"The considerable clean energy investments that have been made in Lowell include funding to dramatically improve energy efficiency at the Untied Teen Equality Center, $5 million for energy efficiency retrofits for the historic buildings in downtown, as well as new solar power technology for the Lowell Regional Transit Authority," said Rep. Niki Tsongas. "Not only will these projects reduce energy bills for the City and promote reliable domestic sources of power, they put people to work installing and developing these cost-saving technologies."
"This investment in clean energy increases efficiency, saves money, creates jobs and improves our environment," Congressman Stephen F. Lynch said. "I am pleased to see these funds being used towards renewable energy here in Massachusetts."
"With American Reinvestment and Recovery Act support, we are ensuring that Massachusetts remains at the forefront of the clean energy technology revolution sweeping the United States," said Rep. Edward J. Markey. "Our clean energy companies are moving forward in developing the solar, wind, and clean vehicle technologies that will transform the way the world generates and uses energy."
"As we mark the second anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, I am pleased that Recovery dollars are helping to jumpstart our economy, create jobs and move this region and this nation to a more energy secure future," said Congressman John Tierney. "As Chairman of the Green Jobs Caucus and co-author of the Green Jobs Act, I remain committed to greening our economy, and ensuring that businesses have the incentive to create and keep green jobs in this country."
"The Patrick-Murray Administration's support of the United Teen Equality Center's green building is a two-fold investment in our future," said UTEC Executive Director Gregg Croteau. "First, it ensures our historic building's future sustainability. And then, UTEC's building gives a permanent home for Lowell's young people to work toward their own sustainability, through social and economic success. We could not have aimed for LEED Platinum Certification without this critical funding. Now, we have the chance to be the oldest building in the United States that's renovated to LEED Platinum standards."
Statewide since 2009, EEA's Department of Energy Resources (DOER) has invested ARRA funds through a number of programs that support Governor Patrick's goals for a clean energy future. These programs include High Performance Buildings ($16.2 million) to demonstrate innovative solutions for long-standing challenges to substantial improvement of energy performance in various building types; Solar Stimulus ($17 million awarded through the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and DOER) to create 16 MW of additional solar capacity across the Commonwealth; and Leading by Example ($14.55 million) to enable savings of tens of millions of dollars in annual energy savings across state-owned facilities - including expected savings of up to 15 percent through an Enterprise Energy Management System that helps state facilities managers identify energy-saving operational improvements through real-time energy monitoring. DOER also awarded $14.7 million in ARRA funds to Massachusetts cities and towns through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants program, including $12.2 million for clean energy and energy savings projects, energy code training, technical assistance for implementing projects, and development and implementation of a web-based tool for cities and towns to track their energy consumption.
"From Quincy to Amesbury, and in nearly four dozen cities and towns along the way, the Patrick-Murray Administration's investment of federal Recovery dollars is revitalizing the regional economy with cutting-edge energy projects that save companies and taxpayers money and improve the environment of Greater Boston and northeastern Massachusetts," said DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia.
"The ARRA funds are a win-win for the city, UTEC and our environment. Not only will it help to create jobs at a time when they are desperately needed, but it will also have an invaluable impact on the environment and, at the same time, provide the agency with long-term energy savings," said state Sen. Eileen Donoghue.
"MassCEC is proud to have been part of this effort to inject Recovery Act funds into solar PV projects in Massachusetts," said Patrick Cloney, executive director of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC). "In total, Commonwealth Solar Stimulus has awarded funds to 102 solar projects in Massachusetts, installing 7.8 MW of solar power. We look forward to seeing these systems and more up and running and producing clean, renewable energy for the people of Massachusetts."
Investment in clean energy is a critical component of Governor Patrick's Massachusetts Recovery Plan, which combines state, federal and, where possible, private efforts to provide immediate and long-term relief and position the Commonwealth for recovery in the following ways:
- Deliver immediate relief by investing in the road, bridge and rail projects that put people to work today and providing safety net services that sustain people who are especially vulnerable during an economic crisis;
- Build a better tomorrow through education and infrastructure investments that strengthen our economic competitiveness, prepare workers for the jobs of the future, and support clean energy, broadband, and technology projects that cut costs while growing the economy; and
- Reform state government by eliminating the pension and ethics loopholes that discredit the work of government and revitalize the transportation networks that have suffered from decades of neglect and inaction.