Statement: Governor’s veto sets back progress on clean energy

For Immediate Release

BOSTON – Gov. Charlie Baker vetoed a bill today that would have cut energy waste and increased renewable electricity generation in Massachusetts. The bill would have set efficiency standards for appliances, ensured that at least 40 percent of our electricity came from renewable sources by 2030, and provided 2,400 megawatts of additional offshore wind energy.

The climate bill was passed by the House and Senate at the end of the 2019-2020 Legislative session and today was the last day for Gov. Baker to sign or veto the bill. As the session has ended, the Legislature cannot override the governor’s veto. However, both House Speaker Ronald Mariano and Senate President Karen Spilka have said they will bring the bill up for a vote again in the new session.

Ben Hellerstein, state director for Environment Massachusetts, issued the following statement:

“I’m deeply disappointed by Governor Baker’s decision to veto the climate bill. Signing this bill would have moved us toward a cleaner, healthier future. Instead, the governor’s veto is sticking us with the dirty, polluting fuels of the past. I hope House Speaker Ronald Mariano and Senate President Karen Spilka move quickly to adopt these policies despite Governor Baker’s veto.

In the race to 100 percent renewable energy, this bill was going to take us the first few steps out of the starting blocks. We’ll need to do everything in this bill, and a lot more, if we want to cross the finish line.

More action is needed to protect our health and prevent the worst impacts of climate change. This year I hope we take more than just a few steps in the right direction. In the race to 100 percent renewable energy, it’s time for Massachusetts to break into a sprint.”