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.\n\n\u201cCities and towns across the state are making progress toward achieving a clean, affordable and resilient energy future for the Commonwealth,\u201d said Governor Charlie Baker. \u201cThese municipalities will use their Green Communities grants to reduce energy use, reduce cost, and help us meet our ambitious greenhouse emission reduction targets.\u201d\n\n\u201cThese Green Communities grants are a highly effective way for the Commonwealth to help cities and towns meet their energy challenges,\u201d said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. \u201cOur administration is pleased to partner with Massachusetts municipalities to ensure the benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency can be enjoyed locally.\u201d\n\nUnder 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\u2019 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\u2019 population.\n\n\u201cGreen Communities are leading the way to reduce their energy use and emissions through clean energy projects,\u201d said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. \u201cThe savings on their bottom line provide new funds for other priorities, like schools and public safety.\u201d\n\n\u201cThe Department of Energy Resources is proud to work with every municipality to find opportunities to save energy and reduce costs,\u201d said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson. \u201cOur partnerships continue to expand, with more than half of the Commonwealth\u2019s population living in a designated Green Communities.\u201d\n\nMunicipality Grants\n\nHolliston\n\t\t\t$147,445\n\t\tLittleton\n\t\t\t$140,870\n\t\tMillis\n\t\t\t$151,325\n\t\tPepperell\u00a0\u00a0\n\t\t\t$152,910\n\t\tStow\n\t\t\t$144,115\n\t\t\n\u201cI\u2019m very proud that Holliston has been named a Green Community,\u201d said State Representative Carolyn Dykema (D-Holliston). \u201cThe 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.\u201d\n\n\u201cHolliston has a strong record in clean energy innovation and sustainability,\u201d said State Senator Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland). \u201cThe \u2018Green Community\u2019 designation reflects our town\u2019s efforts to protect the environment and encourage energy efficiency, and joining the program is a terrific opportunity to continue these efforts.\u201d\n\nAll 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.\n\nFunding 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.