Director, Green Communities Division, Department of Energy Resources (DOER)
The recent Fourth of July holiday marked the 235th anniversary of America’s independence. From California to Maine, long-standing traditions of parades, fireworks, and family cookouts were observed over the extended weekend. With the holiday in our rear-view mirror, it is worth taking a minute to consider, and take pride in, the advancements Massachusetts has made towards another type of independence: the freedom from the reliance on imported fuels or energy sources through the generation of homegrown, clean, renewable energy.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the state of being independent as ’not requiring or relying on something else’ and ‘not subject to control by others’. Each day in Massachusetts, government officials, public and private organizations and businesses, universities, and inspired individuals are working hard to ensure the state breaks free of the costly shackles of our energy dependence. Currently this dependence means sending nearly $18 billion, or 80 percent, of our energy spending out of Massachusetts, largely out of the country. In just the past four years, the Commonwealth has made tremendous strides along a pathway to a cleaner energy future. The state’s clean energy investments are expected to create up to 48,000 jobs in Massachusetts by 2020 and have earned Massachusetts a top-tier ranking in the U.S. Clean Energy Leadership Index .
In a recent video featuring Governor Deval Patrick, the Financial Times highlighted the widespread efforts that have positioned the state to thrive in the burgeoning renewable energy marketplace.
View the video: Massachusetts reaps a wind and solar harvest
So this year, celebrate America’s first hard-won independence. Then take a moment to be proud of the Commonwealth’s investments in clean energy, which will create a new form of independence. While there is still much more work to be done, together we are building a cleaner and more secure energy future for generations to come.
“Mass. Military Division” and “Energy Efficiency” Go Together posted on Jul 25
Energy measures implemented at a Mass. Military Divison site include improved lighting, high efficiency motors, HVAC controls and energy management system upgrades. Under the Accelerate Efficiency Plan, the Commonwealth is investing over $12 million at 29 state facilities throughout the Berkshires.
Solar a “No-Go” on Your Roof? Share Through Community Solar posted on Jul 16
Harvard residents who wanted solar on their homes and were unable to get it due to shading, sloping, or structural barriers, found a solution by sharing the Harvard Solar Garden, an approximately 250 kW project, provides 41 residents and six small businesses with sustainable, clean energy. .
Summer’s Here: Shed Layers and Shed Loads posted on Jul 11
Electricity usage throughout New England reaches its peak during summer heat waves, causing our electricity bills to spike. During periods of high demand, electric utilities typically call on more expensive “peaking” plants to provide extra power. These costs are passed onto larger, non-residential consumers through demand charges on their monthly electricity bill. Municipal buildings can save a significant sum of money if they shut off portions of their electricity during these peak periods.