State Climate Change Policy Initiatives
Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions
As the state works to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent from 1990 levels by the year 2050, the Conservancy is working to ensure that protecting forests is included as a strategy for reducing emissions. Research shows that Massachusetts’ forests capture and sequester approximately 10 to 15 percent of the Commonwealth’s annual carbon dioxide emissions. Watch our Forest Carbon 101 video
Ensuring Environmentally-Sound Renewable Energy
As part of the Conservancy’s efforts to mitigate climate change, we support science-based feasibility studies, standards, practices and guidelines for operation of hydropower, siting of wind energy facilities and use of biomass.
Providing Safeguards for People and Wildlife
The Conservancy is working with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs to provide recommendations on statewide measures that help make people and wildlife less vulnerable to climate change and is one of 10 organizations forming the Massachusetts Climate Change and Wildlife Alliance. See the Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Report.
Federal Climate Change Policy Activities
The Conservancy is grateful for the national leadership of Massachusetts Senator John Kerry and Congressman Edward Markey in developing legislation that supports a clean energy future that strengthens our economy, conserves our natural resources, combats climate change and enhances our national security.
Our federal legislative priorities on climate change include:
- Reducing carbon dioxide emissions using a mandatory national program for greenhouse gases with strong emission caps that achieve at least an 80 percent reduction in U.S. emissions by 2050, to stabilize greenhouse gases at levels that will protect biodiversity and limit climate change.
- Provide incentives to reduce emissions from deforestation and land use change and sequester additional emissions by restoring forests. This should include both market and non-market components to support international and domestic forest carbon efforts.
- Establish funding for natural adaptation strategies, both in the U.S. and in developing nations, to help safeguard human and natural communities from the impacts of climate change.