Baker-Polito Administration Presents Green Communities Designation Awards to Central Massachusetts Communities
HOLLISTON – February 16, 2016 – The Baker-Polito Administration today awarded Green Communities designation grants totaling $736,665 to Holliston, Littleton, Millis, Pepperell, and Stow to fund clean energy projects. These Central Massachusetts municipalities became Green Communities in the ninth round of designations in December.
“Cities and towns across the state are making progress toward achieving a clean, affordable and resilient energy future for the Commonwealth,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These municipalities will use their Green Communities grants to reduce energy use, reduce cost, and help us meet our ambitious greenhouse emission reduction targets.”
“These Green Communities grants are a highly effective way for the Commonwealth to help cities and towns meet their energy challenges,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “Our administration is pleased to partner with Massachusetts municipalities to ensure the benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency can be enjoyed locally.”
Under the Green Communities Act, cities and towns must meet five criteria to be designated a Green Community and receive funding. The grants provide financial support for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that further the designated communities’ clean energy goals. These two designees are now among 155 Green Communities, cities and towns of all sizes that range from the Berkshires to Cape Cod and are home to 54 percent of Massachusetts’ population.
“Green Communities are leading the way to reduce their energy use and emissions through clean energy projects,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “The savings on their bottom line provide new funds for other priorities, like schools and public safety.”
“The Department of Energy Resources is proud to work with every municipality to find opportunities to save energy and reduce costs,” said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson. “Our partnerships continue to expand, with more than half of the Commonwealth’s population living in a designated Green Communities.”
“I’m very proud that Holliston has been named a Green Community,” said State Representative Carolyn Dykema (D-Holliston). “The valuable work of towns like Holliston creates a win-win for Massachusetts. They are leading the Commonwealth toward long-term sustainable energy solutions and strengthening the economy through increased demand for new technology. These grants will help green cities and towns invest in energy efficiency and ease the pressure on local budgets.”
“Holliston has a strong record in clean energy innovation and sustainability,” said State Senator Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland). “The ‘Green Community’ designation reflects our town’s efforts to protect the environment and encourage energy efficiency, and joining the program is a terrific opportunity to continue these efforts.”
All Green Communities commit to reducing municipal energy consumption by 20 percent over five years. These commitments amount to collective savings of 2,153,992 MMBtu, energy use equivalent to heating and powering nearly 17,000 homes, and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 203,538 tons, equivalent to taking almost 39,000 cars off the road.
Funding for these grants is available through proceeds from carbon allowance auctions under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and Alternative Compliance Payments (ACP) paid by retail electric suppliers that do not meet their Renewable Portfolio Standard compliance obligations through the purchase of Renewable Energy Certificates.
Follow EEA on Twitter:............ www.twitter.com/masseea
View downloadable photographs on Flickr:............ www.flickr.com/photos/masseea/sets/
Visit the Energy Smarts blog:................................. www.mass.gov/blog/energy
Visit The Great Outdoors blog:….………………………..www.mass.gov/blog/environment
Visit our website:..................................................... www.mass.gov/eea