2020 Conference Committee Letter

August, 2020

Honorable Members of the Climate Bill Conference Committee:

Mothers Out Front congratulates the House and Senate on the passage of thoughtful and comprehensive climate legislation. We are gratified that both H4933 and S2500 include the mandate of Net Zero emissions by 2050 and that both authorize geothermal microdistrict projects as originally described in the FUTURE Act. We look forward to seeing these provisions in the final bill. 

We also ask you to consider the following Mothers Out Front priorities.

  1. Include H4933’s definitions of Environmental Justice Principles and Environmental Justice Population, as found in Sections 15NN-15RR, H.4933 (lines 687-831) They acknowledge that environmental injustice occurs in low-income communities and in communities of color, and they establish clear mechanisms to identify said populations.
  2. The urgency of the climate crisis calls us to tighten the timeline for emissions limits, benchmarking and reporting. We ask the Committee to adopt the emissions limits in Section 3 of S2500.
  3. Include Net Zero stretch code language to enable municipalities to adopt the Net Zero stretch code as set out in S2500, Section 30, clause and in 14, Sections 31, 42 and 54. We also support expansion of the Bureau of Building Regulations and Standards membership as proposed in Sections 15A-15F, S2500.
  4. Increase solar project capacity to 25 kW, as provided in Section 2 of Amendment #16 to H4912. This addresses the need for more solar generation to meet the Commonwealth’s emissions goals and create local clean energy jobs. Also, adopt Section 17 of the final version of H.4933, addressing the cap for certain net metering facilities and any credits accrued in excess of annual electricity consumption by those facilities.
  5. Reject the expanded definition of non-carbon emitting sources now in H4933. Municipal Light Plants should not be allowed to include more biomass, landfill methane gas, trash, anaerobic digestion and wood as in the House’s proposed new greenhouse gas emissions standard. Only resources that are qualified under the state's Renewable Portfolio Standard or the new Clean Energy Standard. 

Mothers Out Front is a grassroots movement dedicated to a swift, complete, and just transition  from fossil fuels to clean, renewable, and sustainable energy in order to ensure a healthy and viable future for all children. We thank you for your support for these goals and look forward to a climate bill that is robust, equitable and fully committed to mitigating climate change.

 

Ellie Goldberg, Newton, and Hewon Hwang, Concord

On Behalf of the Massachusetts Mothers Out Front Legislation Team

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