For Immediate Release - October 15, 2010

Patrick-Murray Administration Presents Green Communities Awards to Hanover, Mashpee, and Kingston

Grants will help municipalities get "greener" through local energy efficiency and renewable energy projects

KINGSTON - October 14, 2010 - In keeping with the Patrick-Murray Administration's commitment to clean energy, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Ian Bowles today congratulated officials from Hanover, Mashpee and Kingston for clean energy efforts that qualified them to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in state Green Communities grants to finance projects that cut energy use.

"These southeastern Massachusetts communities are valued partners in the Commonwealth's progress toward Governor Patrick's vision of a clean energy future," said Secretary Bowles. "I congratulate them on earning Green Communities grants that will help them take critical next steps to green their operations and reduce both their energy costs and their greenhouse gas emissions."

At an award ceremony in Kingston today, Secretary Bowles presented municipal officials with Green Communities certificates and congratulated them on grants that will finance the following projects:

  • Hanover - $148,598 for incremental costs of a hybrid public safety command vehicle, energy efficiency measures in municipal buildings and to support an energy staff person.
  • Kingston - $163,528 for energy efficiency measures at the Kingston Elementary School, Kingston Public Library and Smith's Lane Fire Station, and to fund an Idleright fuel management system for police vehicles.
  • Mashpee - $170,124 for energy efficiency measures at the Town Hall, KC Coombs Elementary School, Department of Public Works, High School and Police Department, and to fund an educational outreach program.

The three communities honored today were among the 35 cities and towns across the state that met the criteria to be designated as Green Communities pdf format of Meet the 123 Green Communities
by the Department of Energy Resources' (DOER) Green Communities Division last spring. These communities applied in June for grants to fund local clean energy projects and were notified of their grants this summer.

"Taking the initiative to make the changes necessary to promote energy efficiency and encourage renewable energy is critical to a community's future, both environmentally and economically," said Senate President Therese Murray, who represents the town of Kingston. "Kingston has set a great standard that I hope other communities in the area and across the Commonwealth will follow."

DOER awarded $8.1 million in grants based on a minimum award of $125,000 for each Green Community, with the maximum amount adjusted for population and per capita income.

"Hanover, Kingston and Mashpee are among the Commonwealth's municipal clean energy pacesetters, setting an example for the many other cities and towns we hope will meet the criteria to be Green Communities and apply for our next round of grants next year," said DOER Commissioner Phil Giudice.

The signature program of the landmark Green Communities Act of 2008, the DOER's Green Communities Grant Program uses funding from auctions of carbon emissions permits under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to reward communities that earn Green Communities designation by meeting five clean energy benchmarks:
 

The signature program of the landmark Green Communities Act of 2008, the DOER's Green Communities Grant Program uses funding from auctions of carbon emissions permits under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to reward communities that earn Green Communities designation by meeting five clean energy benchmarks:

  • Adopting local zoning bylaw or ordinance that allows "as-of-right-siting" of renewable energy projects;
  • Adopting an expedited permitting process related to the as-of-right facilities;
  • Establishing a municipal energy use baseline and establishing a program designed to reduce use by 20 percent within five years;
  • Purchasing only fuel-efficient vehicles for municipal use, whenever such vehicles are commercially available and practicable; and
  • Requiring all new residential construction over 3,000 square feet and all new commercial and industrial real estate construction to reduce lifecycle energy costs (i.e., adoption of an energy-saving building " stretch code pdf format of Stretch Code Adoption by Community
").

In preparation for the next program of grants, DOER will take applications until November 19 from cities and towns interested in being designated as Green Communities. Designated communities will then have from December 17, 2010 to January 21, 2011 to apply for local clean energy grants.