The urgency of climate change poses pressing challenges for government and business. The City of Boston has targeted 2050 as the year to become carbon neutral, a goal that would require shifting to new energy sources and procurement practices and setting new efficiency standards. In order to reach the carbon-free goal in 30 years, policies need to be implemented in the short-term, particularly expanding the generation and procurement of renewable energy.
Other municipalities and institutions in the Boston area also have ambitious energy goals and are envisioning bold measures to meet them. They realize, despite some progress, the carbon-free goal will not be met without significant policy changes. How can the region move forward rapidly? Join leaders in government and industry for a State House News Forum on the opportunities and obstacles for a carbon-free Greater Boston.
Registration and networking: 8-8:30 am
Overview on the policy challenges ahead: John Cleveland, Executive Director, Boston Green Ribbon Commission.
Panel 1: Expanding Access to Direct Renewable Energy Sources
Offshore wind and solar energy sources offer potential to drastically reduce fossil fuel dependence. Opportunities for the city and region to tap directly into wind and expand solar generation beckon, but require policy action. How can the Boston area expand its access to renewable sources? Panelists include Theodore Paradise, Senior Vice President of Transmission Strategy and Counsel, Anbaric; Eric Graber-Lopez, president, BlueWave Solar. (Additional panelists to be announced soon.)
Panel 2: New Municipal and Institutional Practices and Policies
The Town of Brookline recently sent a powerful message with its ban on installing oil and gas heating systems in new construction, and municipalities and large institutions (including universities and hospitals) are taking steps to promote carbon-free activity, both in terms of energy efficiency and renewable procurement. How can cities and towns and other large energy users implement more policies toward decarbonization? Panelists: Rebecca Davis, Deputy Director, Metropolitan Area Planning Council; David Musselman, Director of the Municipal Energy Unit, City of Boston; Oliver Sellers-Garcia, Director of Sustainability & Environment, City of Somerville.