For Release: March 23, 2021, at 9 a.m.
MAPC Deputy Director Rebecca Davis released the following statement this morning:
“MAPC would like to thank the Baker Administration for the opportunity to provide input on the Interim Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030 at this critical juncture in the planning process. As drafted, the plan outlines several of the critical pathways for the Commonwealth to mitigate the worst impacts of climate change in our communities over the next ten years.
“As a member of the Global Warming Solutions Act Implementation Advisory Committee since its inception, we are pleased to see the Administration making near-term commitments to decarbonize our homes and businesses, connect our communities to renewable and clean sources of energy, and accelerate the transition to carbon-free methods of mobility around the Commonwealth. Among these, we commend the Administration for its focus on implementing the Transportation and Climate Initiative Program and putting place crucial near-term requirements, such as establishing a passive-house-level building energy code by 2022, setting a statewide heating fuel emissions cap by 2023, raising the Clean Energy Standard requirements for 2030, and requiring 100% Zero Emission Vehicle sales for light-duty vehicles by 2035.
“However, the Administration’s draft plan falls short when it comes to articulating tangible systems and tactics to redirect the Commonwealth toward an equitable and inclusive net zero future. Our recommendations to the Administration seek to make equity and environmental justice central to each of the proposed strategies and fully address the role of public transportation and land use planning in achieving net zero. Recent research completed by MAPC shows that the state’s climate goals cannot be achieved without a robust strategy to reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) through smart land use policies, funding, and investment in public transportation.
“Additionally, we believe it is crucial for the Commonwealth’s climate strategy over the next ten years to include a comprehensive approach to develop a green and equitable workforce and dedicated funding sources, such as through an increase to the real estate excise tax to fund climate and housing needs and development of a statewide climate bank, to support climate efforts across the state. This work also necessitates a shift in our economic framework to appropriately account for the social cost of carbon across all decision-making processes and full consideration of the health and economic benefits that can be delivered alongside climate action.
“We look forward to continuing to collaborate with the Administration, the Legislature, and our municipal partners to advance the necessary programs and policies to implement these transitions and empower the Commonwealth to meet its net zero commitment.”