Boston, MA – For years, there has been a robust debate in Massachusetts about how to replace thousands of megawatts of retiring power plants while ensuring the Commonwealth is on track to meet its pollution reduction requirements under the Global Warming Solutions Act. The Massachusetts Senate showed bold leadership last night in passing a bill that embraces offshore wind power as a solution to the Commonwealth’s pressing energy, economic, and environmental challenges.

In response, National Wildlife Federation, Environmental League of Massachusetts, Mass Audubon, Clean Water Action, Mass Energy Consumers Alliance, Massachusetts Sierra Club, 350 Mass for a Better Future, Environment Massachusetts, Conservation Law Foundation, and the Mass Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action issued the following statement:

Massachusetts has much to celebrate as we head into the holiday weekend with new hope for the Commonwealth’s energy independence. We applaud our leaders in the Senate for making a bold commitment to offshore wind power at this critical moment. Offshore wind power offers an unmatched opportunity to produce local, clean power and thousands of jobs across the Commonwealth.

With a commitment to at least 2,000 megawatts of offshore wind power, Massachusetts can finally launch the nation’s offshore wind industry – creating transformative economic development opportunities, replacing fossil fuel-fired power plants, protecting public health, and safeguarding communities, wildlife, and wild places from the dangers of climate change. As the House and Senate versions of the bill now move to the Conference Committee, we urge our leaders on Beacon Hill to seize this opportunity and finalize a bill that will ensure Massachusetts leads America’s pursuit of this next clean energy frontier.

Amber Hewett • July 1, 2016