Green Communities Grant Program (Massachusetts)

From Open Energy Information


Last modified on February 12, 2015.

Financial Incentive Program

Place Massachusetts

Name Green Communities Grant Program
Incentive Type State Grant Program
Applicable Sector Local Government
Eligible Technologies Solar Water Heat, Solar Space Heat, Photovoltaics, Wind, Biomass, Hydroelectric, CHP/Cogeneration, Other Distributed Generation Technologies, Yes; specific technologies not identified
Active Incentive Yes
Implementing Sector State/Territory
Energy Category Renewable Energy Incentive Programs, Energy Efficiency Incentive Programs
Amount Custom incentive, amount will vary

Start Date 03/2010
Expiration Date Application deadline: 01/21/2013
Funding Source Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI)

Maximum Incentive Custom incentive, amount will vary

Program Administrator Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources

References DSIREDatabase of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency[1]


Note: The Green Communities Grant Program is no longer accepting applications. The deadline to receive official designation as a Green Community was October 30, 2012. For designated communities, the grant application period closed January 21, 2013.

In 2008, Massachusetts enacted the Green Communities Act (S.B. 2768) and created the Green Communities Division within the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) to support Massachusetts communities towards a sustainable future, specifically in terms of energy use.

The Green Communities Division offers educational, technical, and networking support to the states' communities. In addition, they provide financial incentives. The Green Communities Grant Program offers funding for communities investing in energy efficiency upgrades and policies, renewable energy technologies, energy management systems and services, and demand side reduction programs.

To be eligible, communities first must apply for and achieve official designation as a "Green Community." The basic steps required for this designation include:

  • Stipulate "as-of-right" siting for renewable energy (or alternative energy) generation, manufacturing, or research and development (via ordinance)
  • Provide for expedited application and permitting processes for those facilities sited in "as-of-right" designated locations
  • Reduce energy use by 20% in 5 years
  • Adopt a policy and procure only fuel-efficient vehicles
  • Establish requirements to minimize life-cycle energy costs for new construction (suggested route for achieving this step is via adoption of "Stretch Code." See the program website for more information).

The Green Communities Division provides several model ordinances and guides and is staffed with energy experts to help communities take these steps to earn designation. As of September 2012, there are 103 officially designated Green Communities in Massachusetts. At the time of designation, the Green Communities Division will inform municipalities of its grant amount, which is based on the available funds, number of applications and a grant formula. Then, the Green Community is invited to submit a grant application for the grant amount.

Incentive Contact

Contact Name Cliff Sullivan
Department Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources
Address 100 Cambridge St., Suite 1020
Place Boston, Massachusetts
Zip/Postal Code 02114
Phone (617) 626-7300


Authorities (Please contact the if there are any file problems.)

Authority 1: M.G.L. ch. 25A, § 10
Date Effective 2008-07-02
Date Enacted 2008-07-02

  • Incentive and policy data are reviewed and approved by the N.C. Solar Center's DSIRE project staff.[1]


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