Press Release

Press Release Healey-Driscoll Administration Designates Three Western Massachusetts Towns as Green Communities

89 Percent of the Commonwealth’s Population Now Resides in a Green Community
For immediate release:
8/08/2023
  • Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
  • Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources
  • Green Communities Division

Media Contact for Healey-Driscoll Administration Designates Three Western Massachusetts Towns as Green Communities

Lauren Diggin, External Affairs Manager

SouthwickThe Healey-Driscoll Administration today announced the towns of East Longmeadow, Hadley, and Southwick as designated Green Communities. The three new Green Communities commit to clean energy and energy efficiency goals to reduce energy usage and lower greenhouse gas emissions and are now eligible for grants totaling more than $445,000. 

With today’s designation, 291 of the Commonwealth’s municipalities hold a Green Communities designation. Since the program began, the Department of Energy Resources’ (DOER) Green Communities program has awarded more than $166 million in grant funding to the Commonwealth’s cities and towns through designation and competitive grant rounds. 

“The Green Communities program is an essential partnership with cities and towns to help them lower carbon emissions and energy costs, strengthen local economies, and help move Massachusetts to a clean energy future,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rebecca Tepper. “We commend East Longmeadow, Hadley, and Southwick for their commitment to implement clean energy projects and reduce building and transportation emissions.” 

“An important part of our clean energy transition will happen at the local level, and we are excited to welcome East Longmeadow, Hadley, and Southwick as designated Green Communities,” said DOER Commissioner Elizabeth Mahony. “The hard work and dedication of our communities to reduce their energy consumption and lower their greenhouse gas emissions will create healthier living spaces across the state and help Massachusetts meets its ambitious climate goals.” 

The 291 Green Communities commit to reducing municipal energy consumption by 20 percent each. East Longmeadow, Hadley, and Southwick commit to reducing their energy consumption amounts to a savings of 23,188 MMBTUs in five years, the energy use equivalent to heating and powering 179 homes, and a greenhouse gas emission (GHG) reduction of 1,635 tons, equivalent to taking 344 cars off the roads. 

Proposed projects for the three new Green Communities include weatherization improvements in schools and municipal buildings, electric vehicles for town and school fleets, and renewable thermal technologies, such as air source heat pumps. 

DOER will award the following funding for projects in these newly designated Green Communities: 

Municipality 

Award 

East Longmeadow 

$160,170 

Hadley 

$139,250 

Southwick 

$146,220 

 

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. 

“To combat the urgent climate crisis, that state must support cities and towns to develop climate resiliency, transition to clean energy, reduce energy usage, and lower greenhouse gas emissions,” said State Senator Jo Comerford (D-Northampton). “I am thrilled Hadley has chosen to become a Green Community and I am grateful to the Healey-Driscoll Administration and the Department of Energy Resources for leading the Green Communities program and awarding Hadley $139,250 in initial grant funding.” 

“Reaching our climate goals here in Massachusetts means working together towards a shared vision and maintaining a strong commitment to change. Becoming a Green Community reflects that shared commitment. I'm grateful to the Healey-Driscoll Administration and DOER for recognizing and supporting East Longmeadow's investment as we work together to achieve our shared climate goals for the Commonwealth,” said State Senator Jacob R. Oliveira (D-Ludlow)

“I am thrilled to have East Longmeadow join Hadley and Southwick as the newest designated Green Communities,” stated State Representative Brian M. Ashe (D-Longmeadow). “The grants available through this designation will allow East Longmeadow to fulfill an important part of the town’s Resilient Master Plan as it relates to energy efficiency, climate change resiliency, and other green initiatives. I would also like to thank the Healey-Driscoll Administration and DOER for continuing to find ways to assist municipalities in reducing their energy consumption and help the Commonwealth meet its climate goals.” 

“Congratulations to Hadley on receiving their Green Communities Designation. This designation shows the town’s commitment to clean energy and a sustainable future. The hard work it takes to become a Green Community is already paying off with $139,250 in state funds coming to Hadley to pursue energy efficiency goals. Thank you to the Healey administration for their partnership and commitment to the entire Commonwealth, including western Mass,” said State Representative Daniel R. Carey (D-Easthampton)

Funding for these grants is available through proceeds from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).  

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Media Contact for Healey-Driscoll Administration Designates Three Western Massachusetts Towns as Green Communities

  • Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs 

    EEA seeks to protect, preserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s environmental resources while ensuring a clean energy future for the state’s residents. Through the stewardship of open space, protection of environmental resources, and enhancement of clean energy, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs works tirelessly to make Massachusetts a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.
  • Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources 

    DOER helps create a clean, affordable, equitable and resilient energy future for the Commonwealth.
  • Green Communities Division 

    The Green Communities Division (GCD) provides grants, technical assistance, and local support from Regional Coordinators to help municipalities reduce energy use and costs by implementing clean energy projects in municipal buildings, facilities, and schools.
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