Press Release

Press Release Baker-Polito Administration Designates 30 Cities and Towns as Green Communities

68 Percent of the Commonwealth’s Municipalities are Green Communities After 12th Designation Round
For immediate release:
12/27/2018
  • Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources

Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Designates 30 Cities and Towns as Green Communities

Jessica Ridlen, Communications Director, Mass DOER

BostonThe Baker-Polito Administration today announced that an additional 30 Massachusetts cities and towns have been designated by the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) as Green Communities, committing to ambitious clean energy goals to reduce energy consumption and lower emissions. With today’s designation, 240 of the Commonwealth’s municipalities, or 68 percent, have earned a Green Communities designation. The 30 new Green Communities are now eligible for grants totaling $4,866,648. Since the program began in 2010, DOER has awarded over $100 million in grant funding to the Commonwealth’s cities and towns through designation and competitive grants.

“The Green Communities program is an essential component of our nation-leading clean energy success and demonstrates our administration’s commitment to partnering with municipalities,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These 30 newly designated communities are pledging to join in responsible stewardship of the environment and taxpayer resources while creating a cleaner, healthier Commonwealth for our residents and businesses.”

“Collaborating with local government and providing necessary resources is a top priority for our administration,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “When cities and towns reduce their energy consumption they not only lower emissions to create a healthier environment for their community, but achieve significant financial savings in operational costs that allow public funds to be used for other needs like public safety and education.”

The 240 Green Communities range from the Berkshires to Cape Cod and are home to 78 percent of Massachusetts’ population in municipalities as large as Boston and as small as Rowe. All Green Communities commit to reducing municipal energy consumption by 20 percent each, and this new group of thirty cities and towns have committed to reduce their energy consumption amounting to savings of 293,936 MMBtus in five years, energy use equivalent to heating and powering nearly 2,281 homes, and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 21,380 tons, equivalent to taking 4,501 cars off the road.  Proposed projects include LED interior lighting upgrades across schools and municipal buildings and HVAC upgrades to improve efficiency and enhance occupant comfort.

“As these 30 newly designated communities invest in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects, Massachusetts continues to lead the nation in clean energy,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “With today’s designation, the Green Communities program continues to prove an effective tool in building a clean energy future for the Commonwealth and achieving our Global Warming Solutions Act goals.”

“DOER is proud to partner with cities and towns across Massachusetts as they make municipal buildings and vehicle fleets clean and efficient to ultimately lower emissions in their communities,” said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson. “Today’s designation is representative of the commitment these municipalities have to create a cleaner, affordable and resilient energy future for the Commonwealth.”

DOER awarded funding for projects in these newly designated Green Communities:

Municipality

Region

Grant

Billerica

Northeast

$225,098

Boxford

Northeast

$131,640

Charlemont

West

$129,074

Colrain

West

$129,880

Dighton

Southeast

$143,636

Dracut

Northeast

$205,137

Fairhaven

Southeast

$174,535

Hanson

Southeast

$151,183

Harwich

Southeast

$152,910

Haverhill

Northeast

$314,505

Heath

West

$129,582

Hingham

Southeast

$142,232

Marion

Southeast

$132,672

Merrimac

Northeast

$141,881

Methuen

Northeast

$268,640

Nahant

Northeast

$129,780

Northborough

Central

$149,309

Orleans

Southeast

$134,709

Rutland

Central

$145,622

Sandisfield

West

$128,805

Seekonk

Southeast

$160,790

Shrewsbury

Central

$183,411

Sturbridge

Central

$143,757

Uxbridge

Central

$158,766

Wareham

Southeast

$204,952

Westborough

Central

$152,096

Westhampton

West

$129,135

Wilbraham

West

$152,815

Worthington

West

$128,495

Yarmouth

Southeast

$191,601

Under the Green Communities Act, DOER’s Green Communities Designation and Grant Program can provide up to $20 million annually to qualified cities and towns. The goal of the Designation Grant Program is to support communities’ investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that further the clean energy goals determined by the designated communities. Initial designation grants are based on a $125,000 base for each designated Green Community, plus additional amounts tied to per capita income and population, and for municipalities that provide as-of-right siting for renewable energy generation.

“I’m thrilled that the western Massachusetts communities of Charlemont, Heath, Sandisfield, Westhampton and Worthington are now designated as a Green Communities,” said State Senator Adam G. Hinds (D-Pittsfield). “Taking this step to improve the collective efforts to advance energy efficiency and renewable energy is good news for the entire Commonwealth.”

"The Green Communities program is another example of Massachusetts' steadfast efforts to pursuing clean energy initiatives, and I am proud Sandisfield will be joining other Berkshire communities in committing to reduce energy consumption and lower emissions," said State Representative Smitty Pignatelli (D-Lenox), Chairman for the Joint Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture. "Thank you to the Baker-Polito Administration for supporting community investments in clean energy efficiency."

"Our communities continue  to look for ways to reduce energy costs at the same time being good stewards of our environment.  I appreciate that the Baker-Polito administration and legislature recognizes this commitment and continue to provide funds to reach these green goals,” said State Senator Anne M. Gobi (D-Spencer), Chairwoman for the Joint Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture.

“Congratulations to the Town of Rutland on receiving a Green Community designation.  I applaud their efforts and investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects which further their clean energy goals,” said State Representative Kimberly Ferguson (R-Holden). “Many thanks to the Baker-Polito Administration, DOER,  and EEA for continuing to support our municipalities,  and for partnering with them to help support important clean energy initiatives  and projects such as these.”

Funding for these grants is available through proceeds from 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.

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Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Designates 30 Cities and Towns as Green Communities

Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources 

DOER helps create a clean, affordable, and resilient energy future for the Commonwealth.
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