Patrick-Murray Administration Presents Leading by Example Awards
UMass Amherst, UMass Medical School, Massachusetts Departments of Transportation and Fire Services, cities of Medford and Northampton, and towns of Greenfield and Mashpee applauded for clean energy and environmental quality achievements
BOSTON - October 19, 2010 - Governor Deval Patrick's Leading by Example Program today recognized two University of Massachusetts campuses, two state agencies, and four municipalities for significantly reducing energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, increased recycling, the use of renewable energy and other clean energy, and environmental quality initiatives.
UMass Amherst and the UMass Medical School in Worcester, along with the Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and Department of Fire Services received 2010 Leading by Example Awards at a State House ceremony. Awards also went to the cities of Medford and Northampton and the towns of Greenfield and Mashpee - all of which were designated Green Communities by the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) last June for meeting a slate of clean energy benchmarks.
"This year, Governor Patrick's Leading by Example Program is once again pleased to honor state and local governments that are setting the pace in the Commonwealth's pursuit of a clean energy future," said Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Ian Bowles, whose office includes DOER's Leading by Example Program. "From a small town on Cape Cod to state government's largest energy user, this year's winners have taken steps that will continue to yield huge dividends for Massachusetts taxpayers and our environment for years to come."
Leading by Example (LBE) was established by an April 2007 Executive Order in which Governor Patrick directed agencies of state government to improve energy efficiency, promote clean energy technology and reduce their environmental impacts. The Executive Order calls on state government to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent, reduce energy consumption at state-owned and leased facilities 20 percent, and procure 15 percent of energy from renewable sources by 2012. In addition, it established the Mass LEED-Plus building standard for new state construction, which requires energy performance to be 20 percent better than code. To meet these goals, the LBE Program works collaboratively with various state agencies including the Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM) and Operational Services Division (OSD).
Awards go each year to state agencies, public higher education institutions, and municipalities that demonstrate outstanding clean energy and environmental leadership. Today's State House awards ceremony was officiated by EEA Assistant Secretary for Policy David Cash, DOER Commissioner Phil Giudice, DCAM Commissioner David Perini and OSD State Purchasing Agent Ellen Bickelman.
"The extraordinary efforts by these award recipients to invest in renewable energy and conserve energy and resources through the purchase of efficient technologies and products clearly illustrates the important role of public procurement in developing and expanding these economic sectors in the Commonwealth and fostering a sustainable energy future," said State Purchasing Agent Bickelman. "Further, Governor Patrick directed all Executive Agencies in Executive Order 515 to establish an Environmental Purchasing Policy with the goal of using procurement to achieve similar environmental accomplishments across all state government operations."
"DCAM is proud to be a partner with DOER and OSD in the Administration's efforts to promote sustainable energy practices at state facilities," said DCAM Commissioner Perini. "Our new construction and major renovation projects are all targeted to meet at least LEED Silver Certification, and some are achieving higher levels. Coupled with DCAM's accelerated energy conservation program, and our development of renewable energy installations, the Commonwealth's buildings are yielding considerable energy savings and carbon footprint reductions."
This year's awards recognize an array of "green" initiatives including heating system replacement, energy efficient building construction, aggressive recycling, adoption of an energy efficient "stretch" building code and renewable energy system installation.
"The Leading by Example Program is integral to Governor Patrick's clean energy agenda," DOER Commissioner Giudice said. "I congratulate these eight awardees for demonstrating leadership and initiative that benefits the Massachusetts environment and our clean energy economy. I'm confident their leadership will inspire other public agencies across the Commonwealth to go the extra mile as well."
In the state college and university category, UMass Amherst - the largest energy user among state facilities - achieved a 26 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (equivalent to taking approximately 8,000 cars off the road) from a 2002-04 baseline three years ahead of the 25 percent reduction target set by the Governor's Executive Order. The campus achieved this milestone by the end of last year through a combination of comprehensive campus-wide efficiency measures, elimination of its coal-fired power plant and conversion to a 10 MW natural gas co-generation power plant. The campus is also investigating installation of a biomass boiler for its co-generation system, and installation of a large solar power array on vacant fields.
The other winner in this category, UMass Medical School, was recognized for a variety of energy efficiency, clean energy and recycling efforts. UMass Medical has eliminated consumption of 900,000 gallons of #6 oil, the dirtiest of fuels used for heating, by switching to natural gas, and has recently constructed a new state-of-the-art "green" data center that uses 40 percent less energy than the old data center. Expanded recycling and waste reduction efforts have led to food waste donations to local pig farmers, recycling of kitchen grease and oil, donations of used furniture and equipment to local non-profits, and an electronic pay stub program for 6,600 employees that will eliminate 3,000 pounds of carbon emissions each year. These and other efforts are promoted to the campus and Medical Center communities through a Growing Green website that communicates the importance of sustainability to students and staff, an electronic green newsletter and an Earth Day event that attracted more than 1,000 people this year.
In the state agency category, MassDOT received a Leading by Example Award for a series of green practices, including implementation of the nation's first "Green DOT" policy, a comprehensive environmental responsibility and sustainability initiative driven by three primary goals: reduce greenhouse gas emissions; promote the healthy transportation options of walking, bicycling and public transit; and support for smart growth development. MassDOT also used 178,000 tons of recycled asphalt pavement in construction projects in 2009, purchased re-refined oil and bio-fuels for use in the agency's own vehicles, and recycled more than 486,000 tires by using them in pavement products.
The Department of Fire Services (DFS) received an award for its expanded and renovated Stow Training Complex. Despite tripling the size of its state-of-the-art training facility to 115,000 square feet through renovations and new construction, DFS expects to see an overall 30 percent reduction in energy use, a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and a 65 percent reduction in potable water use. Sustainability measures include high efficiency HVAC equipment and lighting, increased daylighting, rainwater collection and reuse, and a solar array that will generate eight percent of the site's electricity needs.
In the municipal category, all four awardees were outstanding members of the inaugural class of Green Communities file size 1MB designated by DOER last June - status that has since earned them Green Communities grants for additional clean energy projects. 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 ").
In 2001, Medford became the first municipality in the Commonwealth to develop a climate action plan. The city has converted all traffic lights to highly efficient LEDs, completed diesel retrofits for school buses, installed a 100 kilowatt (kW) wind turbine at the McGlynn School, which generates 10 percent of the school's electricity demand, and has completed feasibility studies for solar PV installations at all six public schools. This month, Medford is launching a residential single stream recycling program, and the city worked with National Grid to conduct energy audits at all public schools. As a result, Medford earned a $504,000 federal stimulus-funded Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant grant for energy efficiency measures earlier this year.
Northampton has reduced municipal energy use by 20 percent through measures such as upgrading high-efficiency LED lamp fixtures at a downtown parking lot and florescent lamps in the city parking garage. Over the last five years, the city converted heating systems from electric and oil to natural gas. By the end of 2010, oil heat will be eliminated in all city and school buildings. Northampton also installed solar PV arrays at its JFK Middle School and James House of Learning Center, and a 108 kW solar project is underway at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School.
The first Massachusetts community to apply for Green Community designation, Greenfield is installing 2 megawatts of solar power on a municipal landfill, which will be generating clean power in spring 2011. Greenfield is also working on $4.1 million in energy upgrades to municipal buildings, and last month broke ground on the first of its kind zero net energy transit station. In 2009, the town launched the Greenfield 10% Challenge - enlisting 10 percent of households and businesses to reduce energy use by 10 percent by the end of 2010. To date, 750 households and 40 businesses have signed the pledge. Greenfield is also home to a near-zero-net-energy affordable housing development of 28 units called Wisdom Way Solar Village.
Mashpee has worked with the Cape Cod Light Compact to complete energy audits at various town buildings and invested in energy efficient improvements, particularly light and HVAC equipment. At the DPW building alone, these improvements have reduced electricity consumption by half. In addition to energy efficiency, Mashpee is working to increase its renewable energy capacity and this year, installed a 20.1 kW solar array on its new LEED-certified public library, with several new solar projects, totaling 350 kW, in the pipeline.
"I am proud that these communities and state institutions are at the forefront of our efforts to bring about a clean energy future for our Commonwealth," said State Senator Stan Rosenberg, whose district includes UMass Amherst. "My congratulations to all the hard-working, dedicated people who made these awards possible."
"I am both pleased and proud that the city of Medford is one of only four municipalities to receive this distinction," said Representative Paul J. Donato. "This is just another example of recycling initiatives that promote clean energy and improve efficiency."
"Massachusetts is a national leader in clean energy standards and energy efficiency. I am proud of the flagship campus of the University of Massachusetts for all of the good things it has done to make itself a leader in this state. The Leading By Example awards are a celebration of all the good work Massachusetts has done so far, and a reminder that we must work even harder in the coming years if we are to catch up with the energy standards of other developed nations," said Representative Ellen Story.
"Let me first take this opportunity to thank Governor Patrick and Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and Executive Office for Administration and Finance for this award and for their outstanding commitment in supporting local communities. I am proud that Medford has realized the benefits, both environmentally, and fiscally, of working together to reduce energy usage across the board. It has helped the city work more efficiently, while reducing our carbon footprint," said Medford Mayor Michael J. McGlynn.
For more information about the Leading by Example Program, click here .