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New England E2 Speaks Out

The New England Chapter of E2 has turned up the heat on its advocacy efforts on three important Massachusetts issues with nationwide implications.
Left to right: Rob Moir, Berl Hartman, Susan Goldhor and Jay Baldwin
Massachusetts’s Ocean Management Bill Nearing Vote: Massachusetts is on the verge of passing the nation’s first Ocean Management Bill which would mandate a comprehensive ocean resources management plan, the goal of which is to restore the abundance and diversity of native species and habitats and the health and productivity of coastal and marine ecosystems. On April 25th four E2 members - Rob Moir, Berl Hartman, Susan Goldhor and Jay Baldwin - met with Kevin Canaan, counsel to Senator Therese Murray, Chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. The group emphasized the fact that the bill had strong support from the business community and that Massachusetts will serve as a role model for the nation if this bill is approved.

Massachusetts Legislature Considers Overriding Governor’s Veto on RGGI:
Massachusetts played an active role in supporting and drafting the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a regional agreement that implements a market-based system to cap CO2 emissions from power plants. However, at the eleventh hour, Governor Mitt Romney opted not to join the pact, though other New England and Mid-Atlantic states agreed to sign. Taking matters into their own hands, the Massachusetts legislature is considering a bill that would override the governor’s decision. On April 13, E2 members Tedd Saunders, Dave Duehren and Berl Hartman spoke at a Massachusetts State Senate hearing on the bill. The group focused its message on the economic opportunities that RGGI creates by sending a signal to the market that encourages companies to find the most innovative and cost-effective ways to cut their pollution.

Fighting to Preserve Renewable Offshore Wind Energy: E2 has been very active in its support for renewable energy, including wind power. Cape Wind, a proposed wind farm in the waters of Nantucket Sound, would produce enough electricity to meet nearly 75 percent of the electricity demand on Cape Cod and nearby islands, replacing up to 113 million gallons of oil per year with clean energy. Now the project, which is supported by nearly every major environmental group, is under attack in Congress from an amendment inserted into the Coast Guard re-authorization bill. The stealth amendment, which has not been debated by any committee of Congress, would grant Massachusetts Governor Romney the right to kill the project. Since he is on record as opposing the project, this is tantamount to a death knell for Cape Wind. E2 New England sent out several alerts, sent letters and faxes to key senators, and mounted a phone campaign to save the project. A recent nationwide E2 alert garnered 280 signatures. Congress has yet to take action on the bill.

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