Massachusetts

Massachusetts has made significant progress on climate action, acting as a regional and national leader in climate policy.

Legislative Profile

Governor: Charles D. Baker (R)

House: Democratic supermajority

Senate: Democratic supermajority

U.S. Climate Alliance Member

Key Resources

Emissions Reduction Targets

By 2025:

33%

By 2030:

50%

By 2040:

75%

By 2050:

Net-zero

All targets relative to 1990 levels

2019 GHG Emissions By Sector (%)

  • Commercial
  • Electric
  • Residential
  • Industrial
  • Transportation
  • Agriculture
Source: EPA State Inventory Tool (SIT)

Use the + icons in each policy area below to explore climate policy that has been passed at the state level, with links to relevant legislation and trackers. Policies in gray have not yet been passed in this state.

Climate Governance & Equity

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Climate Governance

Greenhouse Gas Targets

Emissions Reduction Target

33% by 2025 | 50% by 2030 | 75% by 2040 | net-zero by 2050 Relative to 1990 levels

Mandate Source

Mandatory – S.9 – Creating a next-generation roadmap for Massachusetts climate policy (2021)

Climate Action Plan

Climate Bureaucracy

Interagency Commissions/Task Forces

Non-Governmental Advisory Bodies

GWSA Implementation Advisory Committee

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory

Green Bank

Lead by Example

ACEEE Score – 2 out of 2 points**

Public Fleet ZEV Requirements

Executive Order 594 (2021) – Aquire vehicles so that the total state fleet consists of: 5% ZEVs by 2025 | 20% ZEVS by 2030 | 75% ZEVs by 2040 | 100% ZEVs by 2050

Equity

Environmental Justice Community Designation

Mandate Source

S.9 – Creating a next-generation roadmap for Massachusetts climate policy (2021)

Definition

“Environmental justice communities” are defined as either census block groups where 30% or more of the population has an income below 200% of the federal poverty level, or municipalities that are the most fiscally and economically distressed.

Include race? Yes | Include income? Yes | Include pollution burden? No

State EJ Mapping Tools

EJ Community Benefit Requirement

EJ Bureaucracy

EJ Advisory Bodies

S.9 (2021) – Requires the formation of an Environmental Justice Council

EJ Government Staff

EEA – Environmental Justice Task Force

EEA – Director and Deputy Director of Environmental Justice

DEP – Director of Environmental Justice

**The ACEEE Energy Efficiency Scorecard analyzes the policies and programs states adopt to save energy in public sector buildings and transportation fleets. States can earn up to 2 points.

Adaptation & Resilience

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Governance and Planning

Governance Structures

Office Designation

Task Forces/Advisory Groups

Global Warming Solutions Act (2008) – Implementation Advisory Committee

Cabinet Commissions and Committees

Adaptation and Resilience Plans

Action Plans

Massachusetts State Hazard Mitigation and Adaptation Plan (2018)

Assessments

Frameworks

Climate Hazard Mitigation Plans

Massachusetts State Hazard Mitigation and Adaptation Plan (2018)

Preparing for the Storm: Recommendations for Management of Risk from Coastal Hazards in Massachusetts (2007)

Solutions and Funding

Building Codes, Land Use, and Zoning

Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) Regulations (2013) – Requires all state agencies to prepare for climate change impacts

Built/Hard Infrastructure

Grid Resilience Measures

Act 227–2018 (2018) – relates to electric distribution system resiliency reports

Green Stormwater Infrastructure

State Funding

Development Funding

Act No. 2018–209 / H4835 (2018) – State and local environmental and community resilience funding

StormSmart Coasts Program

MA Coastal Resilience Grant Program

Disaster Relief Funding

Electricity

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Renewables and Energy Storage

Greenhouse Gas Targets

Target

53% by 2025 | 70% by 2030 Relative to 1990 levels

Mandate Source

S.9 – Creating a Next-Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy (2021)

Renewable Portfolio Standard

Target

35% by 2030

Legislation

HB 4857 (2018)

Distributed Generation/Solar Carve-out

SPOT Components – 4 out of 5*

Net Metering

SPOT Components – 8 out of 11*

Energy Storage Standard

SPOT Components – 5 out of 5*

Shared Renewables

SPOT Components – 4 out of 6*

*The State Policy Opportunity Tracker (SPOT) breaks clean energy policies down into “components”, which are binary questions to evaluate policy quality. Higher quality policies have more of their SPOT components fulfilled.

Grid and Utility Reform

Clean Energy Plan

Grid Modernization Plan

The GridWise Alliance’s Grid Modernization Index (GMI) evaluates and ranks the status of grid modernization efforts across all 50 states and D.C.

50-state Ranking – 11th

Interconnection Standards

SPOT Components – 5 out of 6*

Utility Green Power Option

SPOT Components – 2 out of 6*

New Utility Business Model Proceeding

SPOT Components – 5 out of 5*

Carbon Pollution Pricing

Buildings & Efficiency

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Building Energy Codes

Residential Codes

SPOT Components – 6 out of 6*

Statewide code – 2018 IECC

Commercial Codes

SPOT Components – 6 out of 6*

Statewide code – 2018 IECC

Stretch or Reach Codes

*The State Policy Opportunity Tracker (SPOT) breaks clean energy policies down into “components”, which are binary questions to evaluate policy quality. Higher quality policies have more of their SPOT components fulfilled.

Efficiency Programs and Incentives

Weatherization Programs

SPOT Components – 4 out of 4*

Energy Auditing Programs

Retrocommissioning Programs

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE)

SPOT Components – 5 out of 10*

Energy Savings Performance Contracting

SPOT Components – 5 out of 5*

Standards and Market Mechanisms

Energy Efficiency Resource Standard

SPOT Components – 5 out of 5*

Building Performance Standard (BPS)

Appliance Performance Standard (APS)

S.9 (2021) – Established energy and water efficiency standards for 15 new products

Carbon Pollution Pricing

Buildings Data Disclosure

Transportation

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Vehicle Standards and Incentives

Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV) Standards

Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Mandates

Massachusetts ZEV Program

EV Targets and Sales Requirements

Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicle (MHDVs) Sales Standards

Advanced Clean Trucks Rule

EV Sales Requirements

Electric Vehicle Incentives

SPOT Components – 3 out of 5*

Charging Infrastructure Incentives

SPOT Components – 2 out of 5*

Carbon Pollution Pricing

Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS)

State Planning and Investment

Greenhouse Gas Targets

Emissions Reduction Target

18% by 2025 | 34% by 2030 Relative to 1990 levels

Mandate Source

Voluntary – S.9 – Creating a Next-Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy (2021)

Decarbonization Plan

EV and EV Charging Infrastructure Plans

EV Transit Bus Deployment

The ACEEE Transportation Electrification Scorecard analyzes the level of investment and policies states adopt to procure electric transit buses. States can earn up to 6 points.

ACEEE Score – 2 out of 6 points

Bicycle Friendly State

The League of American Bicyclists’ State Report Cards evaluate and rank the safety and efficiency of active transportation systems across all 50 states.

50-state Ranking – 1st

*The State Policy Opportunity Tracker (SPOT) breaks clean energy policies down into “components”, which are binary questions to evaluate policy quality. Higher quality policies have more of their SPOT components fulfilled.

Agriculture

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Soil Health and Regenerative Agriculture Governance

Mandate Source

S.2404 – Passed as part of 2021 economic development bill

Task Force Portal or Action Plan

Requires a Healthy Soils Action Plan

Financial Incentives

S.2404 – Passed as part of 2021 economic development bill

Technical Assistance & Education Programs

S.2404 – Passed as part of 2021 economic development bill

Food Waste Bans and Targets

Food Waste Ban – Required for businesses and institutions that generate more than 1 ton of food waste per week

Mandate Source

310 CMR 19.017 (2014)

Industry, Materials, and Waste Management

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Short-Lived Climate Pollutant (SLCP) Regulations

HFC Regulations

310 CMR 7.76 (2020) – Prohibits the use of certain HFCs in refrigeration equipment, air conditioning chillers, aerosol propellants, and foams that are manufactured or used in Massachusetts

Methane Regulations

310 CMR 7.73 (2017; updated in 2021) – Sets annual declining emission limits for Massachusetts natural gas operators

SF6 Regulations

310 CMR 7.72 (2017) – Reduces SF6 emissions from gas-insulated switchgear

Carbon Pollution Pricing

Buy Clean Requirements

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Last Updated June 2022