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Green groups want Greenfield to use renewable energy



Recorder Staff
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

GREENFIELD — Community environmental groups are looking to get Greenfield off fossil fuels and exclusively on renewable energy.

A resolution has been sent to City Council to fully transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources in the city. The resolution, sent by Greening Greenfield and Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution, will be discussed during the full council meeting later today.

Councilor Tim Dolan and the Sustainable Greenfield Implementation Committee have provided support for the resolution ahead of the meeting.

The resolution comes as the Legislature moves to make the state run on 100 percent renewable energy, which Greening Greenfield’s Nancy Hazard said was the impetus for the request.

Most recently, the state Senate passed legislation on Friday that could get the state onto 100 percent renewable energy by 2047. The legislation is now with the House of Representatives.

“I think this is part of larger statewide goals,” Dolan said.

The state has taken other steps according to organizers, such as improving offerings from the Mass Save, a collaborative of Massachusetts utilities that provides financing for energy upgrades to income-eligible residents.

If the resolution passes, Greenfield would join a number of Massachusetts communities promising to convert to 100 percent renewable energy in the future, including Northampton, Amherst and Wendell.

The resolution notes all of the city’s energy needs could be met with the use of solar and wind sources, as well as improving energy efficiency in the city and utilizing green transportation options.

The resolution follows several steps previously taken toward becoming a more environmentally sound community.

These include goals adopted by previous Mayor Christine Forgey to reduce emissions by 80 percent and keeping all money for energy in the region by 2050 and being designated one of the first green communities in the state in 2010.

Hazard believes it’s reasonable for the city to move toward renewable energy now, from which “the community as a whole will benefit.”

Benefits listed in the resolution include reduced energy costs, adding different employment and economic opportunities and reducing emissions that are linked to climate change.

You can reach Dan Desrochers at:

ddesrochers@recorder.com

413-772-0261, ext. 257