Advocacy

Our Advocacy Interest Group is led by Chapter Volunteers Emma Corbalan of MIT and John DiModica of PACEworx. 

USGBC MA is a champion for green buildings and sustainability in our communities.

We convene stakeholders to promote green building (and sustainable community) friendly legislation, initiatives, and local regulations.


Current priorites on the state-wide front include the following issues:

PACE

November 10, 2015 UPDATE:

MassDevelopment has opened up a search for a Commercial PACE Program Manager position. We anticipate toward $100M in deal flow in the coming years for renewable energy and retrofits in Massachusetts.

We have succeeded with PACE reform: we now have enabling the appropriate legislation to create the program. We do not have a program mandate for residential PACE but we will continue to monitor the sitiuation. 

Our PACE stakeholder advocacy group—made up of around 12 organizations and trade groups, primarily with environmental, labor, and economic development interests — should be proud of this achievement. Particularly noteworthy was the participation of NAIOP - the commercial real estate industry group - who also supported C-PACE along with USGBC. 

Net Zero

November 10, 2015 UPDATE:

We are working with the City of Cambridge to support their Net Zero Action Plan - to track toward a net zero built environment in that City by 2050. They have agreed to that plan and the staff were directed by the City Council to support other municipalities to pursue a similar plan in their jurisdictions.

The "Act promoting zero net-energy buildings in the Commonwealth," championed by Senator Eldridge did not survive the 2015-16 legislative session. It would have created a state-wide mandate for a more stringent path to Net Zero Building Codes. The advocacy team is continuing to expand our network of support around this issue, and as one of our key advocacy issues for 2015 we will be focusing on Net Zero Code.

This work is connected to the building codes and energy codes of the Commonwealth.

Net Metering

November 10, 2015 UPDATE:

Net Metering reform has been achieved, through the omnibus energy bill signed in the summer of  2015.

 

Past priorities, which are in a "hibernation mode" at this time, include:

  • Massachusetts Stretch Code
  • Statewide Building Benchmarking

Recent successes include:

  • Greening the MLS
  • Building Energy Benchmarking 
    • in Boston: Building Energy Reporting and Disclosure Ordinance (BERDO)
    • in Cambridge: Building Energy Use Disclosure Ordinance (BEUDO)
  • LEED Requirement for the Massachusetts Convention & Exhibition Center Expansion
  • LEED incentives at the municipal level
  • Toxics exposure reduction / flame retardant diminishment

 

At the National level, we participate with the USGBC on a variety of campaigns. This includes defending LEED as a system for enhancing the value of institutional buildings, supporting the evolution of the LEED rating system, and engaging with industry stakeholders to facilitate our vision of green buildings for everyone within a generation.

You can read more about these at the USGBC national website.

Our efforts are spread out among our many committees, including our Residential Green Building Committee and our Green Schools Committee.