Pleased to join my colleagues in the Legislature in giving final approval to an Environmental Bond Bill today focused on improving climate change resiliency and adaptation; enhancing environmental and natural resource protection; and investing in parks and recreational assets.
The legislation passed today ensures that Massachusetts can continue to plan for global warming and a changing climate, including along our vulnerable coastlines.
Among other spending, the bill appropriates:
• $225,000,000 for community investment grants;
• $100,000,000 for energy and environment coastal infrastructure;
• $100,000,000 for state hazard mitigation, climate adaptation, and resilient land conservation;
• $75,000,000 for municipal vulnerability preparedness;
• $55,000,000 for river and wetland restoration programs;
• $54,000,000 for rural investments.
Today’s bill also requires the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security to coordinate and strengthen the Commonwealth’s climate resilience and prepare for climate change impacts; publish an integrated state climate adaptation and hazard mitigation plan every five years; and establish frameworks for state agency and municipal vulnerability assessments to be included in the state plan.
Additionally, the legislation creates and funds a Global Warming Solutions Trust Fund to fund the implementation of the Global Warming Solutions Act, the state’s Clean Energy and Climate Plan, and state and local strategies for climate adaptation.
The Environmental Bond Bill also emphasizes the importance of public and parkland throughout the Commonwealth, appropriating $150,000,000 to tree planting, urban and suburban parks, EEA land acquisition, and trails.
Other highlights of the bill include the creation of the Agricultural Innovation Fund to finance grants for the Commonwealth’s agricultural and cranberry producers; and the Fishing Innovation Fund for the design, construction and modification of commercial fishing vessel; and for research, development, acquisition and deployment of advanced or innovative technologies such as sonar, satellite, radar and radio communications.