(January 3, 2023) — The Baker-Polito Administration announced $6,180,510 in Green Communities competitive grants to 50 municipalities across Massachusetts to fund clean energy projects.
With this announcement, the Baker-Polito Administration has awarded nearly $127 million since 2015 to Green Communities for Designation and Competitive Grants through the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER).
The grants will fund various projects, including the acquisitions of hybrid police cruisers, battery-electric vehicles and electric vehicle charging stations. Projects also include ventilation system upgrades, weatherization, and decarbonization of municipal buildings and facilities. Additionally, thirty-six percent of the grant awards are supporting building electrification projects.
“The work of our cities and towns to implement these energy efficiency and renewable energy projects supported by the Green Communities Program is crucial to the Commonwealth meeting its climate goals and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Our Administration has been proud to support municipal projects that reduce long-term energy costs for our cities and towns while making the Commonwealth a cleaner, healthier and more affordable place to live.”
“The 290 Green Communities across the Commonwealth are leaders in Massachusetts’ efforts to reduce energy use, emissions, and costs,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “We are proud of the successful partnerships between the state and our municipalities, for each communities’ commitment to move innovative energy efficiency and clean energy projects forward, and the work to deliver emissions-free, affordable, equitable, and renewable energy to our residents and business owners.”
Under 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’ clean energy goals. Two-hundred ninety Massachusetts cities and towns, which account for 89 percent of the Commonwealth’s population, have currently earned the Green Communities designation.
This round of DOER Green Communities competitive grants is awarded to existing Green Communities that have successfully invested their initial designation grants and previous competitive grant awards. Grants are capped at $200,000 per municipality, with the exception of larger multi-year projects, which are capped at $500,000. Funding for these grants is available through proceeds from carbon allowance auctions under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
“Massachusetts Green Communities are critical partners working to help achieve the Commonwealth’s clean energy and emissions goals by collectively decreasing our carbon footprints, reducing municipal energy use, and advancing clean energy technologies,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Beth Card. “The clean energy projects funded by these grants will assist communities across Massachusetts to become cleaner and healthier places to live and work while continuing to establish the state as a national leader in energy efficiency and clean energy.”
“The grants awarded to these 50 cities and towns will help reduce emissions from buildings, make our transportation cleaner, invest in the local economy, and are a further step in helping Massachusetts achieve a net-zero economy,” said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Patrick Woodcock.
The following municipalities received grant awards:
|Municipality||Approved Grant Request $||Municipality||Approved Grant Request $|
“Westport has continued to be in the forefront as a community that has invested in the community’s goals for clean energy. As a result, Westport will receive $467,000 as a recipient of the Green Communities Competitive Grant, to further support the outstanding work the community has already begun,” said State Senator Michael J. Rodrigues (D-Westport). “Congratulations to Westport and the other 49 communities.”
“We must continue to invest in a green economy if we hope to achieve our clean energy goals,” said State Senator Joan B. Lovely (D-Salem). “I would like to thank all our Green Communities, including Beverly, who continue to make the conscious choice to preserve and protect our planet in all their decisions. By investing in the well-being of our environment today we can ensure that future generations have a better tomorrow. Congratulations on this well-deserved funding.”
“I am incredibly proud to represent Westport, their commitment to environmental stewardship across all avenues is exemplary and their naming as a ‘Green Community’ is a tremendous accomplishment,” said State Representative Paul A. Schmid, III (D-Westport). “Thank you to the Baker-Polito Administration for making this possible.”
Representing total cost savings of over $700,00 annually and leveraging utility incentives of over $1.9 million, once completed, the grant-supported projects are estimated to yield energy savings of nearly 26,000 MMBtus, which translates to the amount of energy consumed by 202 Massachusetts households. In GHG terms, the projects are estimated to reduce emissions by 1,777 metric tons every year – roughly equal to taking 374 cars off the road.
Since 2010, DOER has awarded more than $166 million to Green Communities grants. For additional information on awarded projects and funding amounts, please click here.