USA: Massachusetts Governor Awarded “Green Governor of the Year Award”
Massachusetts Governor Deval L. Patrick (D) accepted the “Green Governor of the Year Award” for his innovative environmental leadership in 2012.
Patrick earned the honor by driving bipartisan environmental initiatives, public-private partnerships, and visionary legislation that raise the bar for energy efficiency; expand renewable energy infrastructure and usage; grow the clean tech industry and create new jobs; promote green building; and support ecosystem conservation.
“With national policy hitting major roadblocks and traditional trade failing to produce the necessary solutions, the pressure—and opportunity—rests with our state and local leaders,” said Beautiful Earth Group President and CEO Lex Heslin, founder of this Award, in its third year. “We need more governors like Patrick launching win-win initiatives that produce measurable environmental results, while lowering energy costs, creating new jobs and protecting the health of citizens for decades to come.”
Environmental Highlights From Patrick’s Governorship:
Energy Efficiency: Massachusetts ranked #1 for energy efficient in 2011 and 2012 by the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy.
Renewable Energy: Massachusetts is poised to become the premier center of offshore wind development in the United States thanks to Governor Patrick’s leadership in supporting the nation’s first offshore wind farm, Cape Wind.
Return on Investment: According to state officials, Massachusetts’ newest energy efficiency programs and incentives are projected to generate nearly $9 billion in benefits from $2.7 billion in investments over the next three years.
Green Jobs: Green jobs increased 11.2 percent from 2011 to 2012.
Green Building: Patrick commissioned the first state-owned, net-zero building at North Shore Community College in Danvers, completed in 2011.
Land Conservation: Since taking office, his Administration has made a historic investment of more than $300 million to conserve more than 100,000 acres.
“Throughout his public service to the people of Massachusetts, Patrick has made greening the environment a cornerstone of his political and policy agenda,” said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). USGBC’s LEED green building program is the most widely recognized green building program across the globe, with over 50,000 projects spread across 135 countries. “In 2012 alone, 106 projects earned LEED certification in Massachusetts, totaling more than 13 million square feet of greener, healthier building space.”
“We appreciate Governor Patrick’s efforts to cut dangerous air pollution from the state’s remaining coal-fired plants and to advance innovative, clean energy solutions like offshore wind. Under his leadership, Massachusetts is becoming a national leader in the transition toward a clean energy economy, and we look forward to continuing to work with him to clean up the air in New England and to make the region the nation’s leading clean energy development hub,” said Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune.
“Thanks to Governor Patrick’s courage and grit,” said Lex Heslin, “other state, local and even national policymakers will be able to point to his success and implement proven solutions faster – and with less risk.”
Last year’s award went to Peter Shumlin (D), Governor of Vermont, with the inaugural award having gone to Arnold Schwarzenegger (R), then Governor of California.
Press release, February 22, 2013; Image: beautifulearthgroup