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Climate Change Forces Massachusetts to Set New Zero Emissions Goal

On Monday, Charlie Baker, Massachusetts Governor, signed into law Climate Change legislation to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. Baker said, “Climate Change is an urgent challenge that requires action, and this legislation will reduce emissions in Massachusetts for decades to come while also ensuring the commonwealth remains economically competitive.”

After months of running back and forth between the Republican Governor and the Democratic Legislature, the new law was passed. The law establishes interim goals for emission reductions and authorizes the voluntary energy-efficient building code for municipalities. The state also allows procuring an additional 2,400 MW of offshore wind energy by 2027.

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said, “Cities and towns across Massachusetts continue to face increasingly severe impacts from Climate Change, and the commonwealth is answering the call for ambitious climate action.” Beyond committing Massachusetts to achieve net-zero emissions in 2050, the legislation also authorizes the state to establish emissions limit not less than 50% below 1990 levels for 2030 and no less than 75% for 2040.

Every five years, the legislation also authorizes EEA to establish emissions limits and sub-limits for at least six economic sectors, including natural gas distribution and electric power. Climate Change has also been established as an “economical burden” and requires evaluations of new projects to include historic environmental pollution assessments.

The Politico and Baker Administration released a roadmap report at the end of last year. They found that the most cost-effective and low-risk pathway to net-zero share core elements. It includes a balanced, clean energy portfolio anchored by software.

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