Massachusetts Launches $40 Million Municipal Resiliency Initiative

Under the Patrick Administration, a $40 million municipal resiliency initiative was recently launched to help ensure energy resiliency at critical facilities and protect communities from interruptions in energy services.

“We have already seen firsthand in Massachusetts how devastating a loss of energy can be to a community during times of natural disaster, and predictions are that the impacts of climate change will only make these events more severe going forward,” said Governor Patrick. “This initiative will provide communities across the Commonwealth the opportunity to identify their most critical assets now and utilize clean energy technology to keep their residents safer in the future.”

Through this grant program, $40 million in state funding will be made available to cities and towns that identify the facilities in their community where loss of electrical service would result in disruption of a critical public safety life sustaining function, including emergency services, shelters, food and fuel supply, and communications infrastructure. Municipalities will be able to utilize clean energy technologies to keep their energy systems operable.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for municipalities to prepare for and address the multiple threats of climate change,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rick Sullivan. “This innovative program demonstrates the Patrick Administration’s commitment to climate change mitigation and preparedness by protecting the Commonwealth and ensuring that our energy grid can sustain more frequent, extreme weather patterns in a manner supporting our clean energy future.”

Under the program, administered by the Department of Energy Resources (DOER), cities and towns can apply for either technical assistance or direct project implementation funding to help protect their communities from interruptions in energy service due to severe climate events worsened by the effects of climate change. Communities that receive a technical assistance award can subsequently apply for project implementation funding.

“These grants will provide an opportunity for cities and towns to tap the technology and expertise of the Commonwealth’s clean energy industry to protect residents and businesses from the effects of climate change,” said DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “We’re pleased to be able to support communities as they take this next step as clean energy leaders.”

The grants will be funded through Alternative Compliance Payments (ACP), which are paid by electrical retail suppliers if they have insufficient Renewable or Alternative Energy Certificates to meet their compliance obligations under the Renewable and Alternative Portfolio Standard programs.

Date Posted: 6/12/2014