An Act transitioning Massachusetts to 100 percent renewable energy
Environment MA Fact Sheet
2017-2018 Legislative Session
H.3395: Rep. Sean Garballey and Rep. Marjorie Decker
S.1849: Sen. Jamie Eldridge
Ben Hellerstein, Environment Massachusetts State Director
Our reliance on dirty energy like oil, gas, and coal is polluting our communities and changing our climate faster than scientists predicted. Fossil fuel pollution has been linked to asthma and other respiratory problems. From dangerous heat waves and droughts to rising sea levels and extreme storms, global warming is already affecting our communities — and scientists predict it could get much worse.
The good news is that a future powered by 100 percent clean, renewable energy like solar and wind is within reach. Massachusetts has often been a leader in clean energy, and now it’s time for us to lead the way again.
An Act transitioning Massachusetts to 100 percent renewable energy will accelerate the growth of clean energy, promote interagency collaboration to achieve 100 percent renewable energy economy-wide, and set out clear, enforceable goals and requirements to ensure we achieve that objective.
The Act will:
- Set a goal of 100 percent renewable energy economy-wide by 2050 (including electricity, heating, transportation, and other sectors), and 100 percent renewable electricity by 2035.
- Establish an interagency working group to evaluate all state laws, regulations, and programs that affect energy consumption, and propose changes to accelerate the transition to 100 percent renewable energy.
- Establish a Clean Energy Center of Excellence to sponsor research into clean energy technologies and deployment, and a Council for Clean Energy Workforce Development to foster access to employment opportunities.
- Require the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) to identify major sources of energy consumption in Massachusetts and set interim limits on the percentage of energy coming from non-renewable sources in 2030 and 2040.
- Direct DOER to work with the Department of Environmental Protection and other state agencies to implement regulations that will enable Massachusetts to achieve 100 percent renewable energy while also meeting the goals of the Global Warming Solutions Act.
- Direct DOER and the Department of Transportation to conduct studies identifying pathways towards 100 percent renewable energy for the building sector and the transportation sector.
- Establish a Clean Energy Workforce Development Fund to support job training, education, and job placement assistance for Massachusetts residents hoping to work in the clean energy industry, funded by energy savings from clean energy projects installed on state properties.
- Require at least half of workforce development funds to be spent on programs that primarily benefit residents of Gateway Cities, transitioning fossil fuel workers, and residents of environmental justice communities. Require state agencies to consider how to maximize access to the benefits of clean energy and minimize the costs of the transition for disadvantaged communities.
For more information:
- Visit Environment MA website: http://bit.ly/go100massachusetts.
- Check out Renewable Communities, the Environment MA report highlighting cities and towns in Massachusetts that are leading the way towards 100 percent renewable energy: http://bit.ly/RenewableCommunities.