A Better City Helps to Shape the Commonwealth’s Transportation and Buildings Sector Emissions Reduction Strategies

Written By Kate Dineen, Executive Vice President, A Better City

Eight years ago in May of 2012, former EEA Secretary Sullivan convened an Implementation Advisory Committee (IAC) to advise the Baker Administration’s implementation of the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA). The IAC features leaders from the business, energy, environmental, building, transportation, and academic communities in Massachusetts, and IAC meetings are open to the public.

As Rick Dimino’s official designee, A Better City’s Executive Vice President, Kate Dineen, has been participating in all IAC meetings on behalf of a Better City. Additionally, she staffs the IAC’s Transportation Sector Working Group. Yve Torre, A Better City’s Director of Climate, Energy & Resilience, staffs the IAC’s Buildings Sector Working Group.

Over the past several months, the IAC working groups met frequently to develop and refine a list of recommended policy priorities to shape the Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030 (2030 CECP). The Transportation Working Group priorities included: increasing investment to expand public transit, delivering smart roadway pricing strategies, and phasing out new gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles. The Building Sector Working Group priorities included: setting mandatory greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction limits, establishing a large-scale statewide financing program or climate bank, and aligning IAC priorities with the three-year energy efficiency programs for utilities, currently under discussion with the Energy Efficiency Advisory Council (EEAC). To view the complete list of the recommended transportation policy priorities, click here. To view the complete list of the buildings sector policy priorities, click here.

In terms of next steps, in December 2020, EEA is expected to release two related, but distinct documents: the final Massachusetts Decarbonization Roadmap to 2050 (2050 Roadmap) and the draft Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030 (2030 CECP). The 2050 Roadmap is designed to identify cost-effective and equitable strategies to ensure that Massachusetts reduces direct GHG emissions by at least 85% economy-wide by 2050. EEA will also release a series of technical appendices to detail sector-specific methodologies and findings from the 2050 Roadmap. The draft 2030 CECP will provide a 2030 GHG emissions reduction goal and detail a set of priority action items to ensure that the Commonwealth achieves this goal in a manner that is consistent with the findings in the 2050 Roadmap. EEA will hold a public comment period in the winter of 2020/2021 to solicit stakeholder input on the 2030 CECP, which will be finalized in the spring of 2021.

The A Better City team will share our analyses of both the final 2050 Roadmap and draft 2030 CECP once they are released and will keep you posted on related updates. To learn more about the GWSA IAC, click here.

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