Area Legislators Celebrate Green Communities Grants

State Representative Jennifer Benson, State Senator Jamie Eldridge, and State Representative Cory Atkins are pleased to announce that six towns across their districts have been awarded funding from the Department of Energy Resources for clean energy projects.

BOSTON – July 9, 2015 – Representative Jennifer Benson, Senator James Eldridge, and Representative Cory Atkins announced today that the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) has awarded $1.15 million in grants to the towns of Acton, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Concord, Harvard, and Maynard to fund various clean energy and efficiency initiatives.

Projects funded include town-wide conversions to LED lighting, HVAC upgrades to school buildings, efficiency retrofitting of town facilities, installations of energy management systems, and replacements of inefficient climate control equipment.

“It is great news that Acton and Harvard have been awarded Green Communities grants from DOER,” said State Representative Jennifer Benson (D-Lunenburg). “Acton and Harvard have been leaders in the state when it comes to energy efficiency, and this funding means they can complete a number of important efficiency projects so that they can continue to serve as exemplary Green Communities.”

“I am pleased the Baker administration has provided Green Communities grants to the communities of Acton, Harvard, and Maynard,” said State Senator Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton). “Each of these communities has made great strides in reducing energy use and embracing alternative energy since they first became Green Communities, and this additional state funding will allow them to do even more to combat global warming and reduce energy costs.”

“The environmental revolution started in Concord with Henry David Thoreau and is still alive and well,” said State Representative Cory Atkins (D-Concord). “It is only fitting that Acton, Carlisle, Chelmsford, and Concord should continue Thoreau’s legacy and be designated as a Green Communities.”

Across the state, these initiatives and others like them are projected to result in annual costs savings of $2.1 million, energy savings equivalent to the annual consumption of nearly 550 Massachusetts homes, and greenhouse gas reductions equal to removing more than 1,100 cars from the road.

“Our administration is proud to help Green Communities reduce their energy use so they can reinvest their financial savings in schools, police, fire, municipal infrastructure and other local initiatives,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Massachusetts’ leadership in energy efficiency continues to help municipalities around the state secure long-term energy savings and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

DOER officials notified the legislators of the grant award recipients yesterday afternoon. In total, 51 cities and towns across the Commonwealth designated as Green Communities were awarded $8,894,583 in funding. The grants are funded through proceeds from Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative auctions and Alternative Compliance Payments under the Massachusetts Renewable Portfolio Standard.

The 136 Green Communities across the state are home to more than half of Massachusetts’ population. All Green Communities commit to reducing their municipal energy consumption by 20 percent after five years.

Information on grant amounts and project details can be found here.