As part of Earth Week, Governor Charlie Baker announced a new effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and boost energy efficiency across state government, after the administration invested $1 billion in climate change a year ahead of schedule.
The executive order, which Baker signed Thursday in an energy-efficient bunker at the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency in Framingham, includes a mandate for the state to start purchasing zero-emission vehicles next year and to double the number of electric charging stations at state facilities by 2030.
The order, named Leading By Example: Decarbonizing and Minimizing Environmental Impacts of State Government, prioritizes the implementation of technologies that use electricity as a source of energy in state institutions over technologies that use fossil fuels, according to a release from Baker’s office.
“Addressing climate change requires bold, urgent action, which is why I am proud that our Administration has achieved an ambitious goal of investing $1 billion in climate adaptation and mitigation efforts, an accomplishment we will continue to build on through this Executive Order,” Baker said in the release.
The order also puts in place several new environmental restrictions including that all new construction must meet energy performance standards.
Since 2004, state entities have collectively reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 35 percent, reduced heating oil use by 85 percent, eliminating more than 18 million gallons of fuel oil, and reduced energy use per square foot by 14 percent, the statement said.
“The executive order signed by Governor Baker will make our state government more sustainable, resilient, and lead to environmental benefits in cities and towns throughout Massachusetts,” Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides said in the release.