For Immediate Release - December 03, 2013

PATRICK ADMINISTRATION LAUNCHES NEW, INNOVATIVE WEBSITE TO COMMUNICATE GLOBAL WARMING INITIATIVES AND PROGRESS

Dashboard shows Massachusetts Greenhouse Gas Emissions are down 10 percent since 1990

BOSTON – Tuesday, December 3, 2013 – The Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) today launched a new dashboard for Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) initiatives.

“The new dashboard will communicate the Commonwealth’s progress towards reducing our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and help us shape future GHG reduction policies,” said EEA Secretary Rick Sullivan. “It’s also a great tool to engage the citizens of the Commonwealth so they can monitor, measure and contribute to our work toward meeting our GWSA goals for 2020 and beyond.”

The Boston-based Barr Foundation awarded the Patrick Administration with grant funding last year to develop both The Massachusetts Clean Energy & Climate Performance Management System (CCPMS) that EEA will use to manage implementation of The Massachusetts Clean Energy & Climate Plan for 2020 (CECP) and a public facing dashboard that shows EEA’s progress towards compliance with our 2020 GHG emission limits.

"The Barr Foundation is committed to helping Boston and Massachusetts achieve aggressive targets for emissions reductions and become national models for climate action," says Mariella Puerto, Barr Foundation Senior Program Officer. "We saw this dashboard as an important tool for the State to monitor and share progress, to inform decision making, and to share lessons learned."

The dashboard aims to be a user-friendly and engaging website that utilizes cutting-edge graphics and case studies to present data and enhance public awareness on the status of GWSA implementation.

The system is one of the first of its kind nationwide, and is expected to serve as a regional and national model that other states can adopt to analyze their efforts in reducing GHG emissions.

“Massachusetts is a national leader on energy efficiency and renewable energy,” said George Bachrach, President of the Environmental League of Massachusetts and member of the GWSA Implementation Advisory Committee. “Fighting climate change is not government’s job alone.  All of us must be in the game.  We need tools like this dashboard to measure our progress and challenges, and it must be done in the most transparent manner for all to see.  Without measurement and accountability, we run the risk of stalling or falling back, a risk we cannot afford.”

"The investment in the GWSA Dashboard helps everyone see the significant climate and clean energy progress made over recent years in Massachusetts, and gain insights on the important work ahead of us in energy efficiency, buildings, renewables and transportation. This is a roadmap for a cleaner energy system for a growing and cost-effective clean energy economy in Massachusetts that meets important Greenhouse Gas emission reduction goals of the GWSA,” said New England Clean Energy Council President Peter Rothstein, a member of the GWSA Implementation Advisory Committee.

Governor Patrick signed the GWSA into law in 2008, which established the most ambitious, economy-wide greenhouse gas emission limits for any single state in the country:

  • 25 percent below statewide 1990 GHG emission levels by 2020.
  •  At least 80 percent below statewide 1990 GHG emission levels by 2050.

EEA subsequently released the CECP, which is a portfolio of policies that EEA is currently implementing and that will ensure the Commonwealth reduces its GHG emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020. The GWSA offers a unique and historic opportunity for the Commonwealth to develop innovative solutions that will help prevent the devastating and costly negative effects of climate change while improving the quality of our environment and public health, save households and businesses money through energy savings, create jobs and spur economic development, especially through our rapidly growing clean energy sector.

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