2021-2022 Legislative Session Goal: Ensure new buildings are constructed to the highest standards and begin to address retrofitting existing buildings

Buildings are the second largest source of emissions in Massachusetts and the largest source in the City of Boston. A robust net-zero building code can reduce emissions, enhance resilience, limit the load-intensity on the electric grid, and lower operating costs. Modern building standards would result in improved health outcomes and the creation of local jobs in design, construction, and retrofitting, benefitting communities throughout the Commonwealth. 

Further, the Mass Save program must be made accessible to historically underserved communities. Improving the efficiency of as many buildings as possible will make it easier to ensure the electric demand of our New England grid is met with clean energy. 

2021-2022 Priority Bill 

An Act relative to building energy and decarbonization (HD 3593) – Rep. Meschino  

  • Mass Save: Amends to support populations historically underserved by the program  
  • New buildings: Board of Building Regulation and Standards (BBRS) and Stretch Code  
    • Further defines “net zero building”
    • Requires incorporating the new performance standard into the stretch code by 2025 and into the base code by 2028  
    • Amends the BBRS mission to include climate, public health, equity and how policies meet 2050 Roadmap targets 
  • Existing buildings: Deep energy retrofits 
    • Establishes a building retrofit program at DOER (and trust fund to support)  
    • Establishes a net zero building task force under DOER to support a new performance standard program and energy retrofit program  
  • Fossil fuel systems: Removes state funding for switching among fossil fuel systems 
    • Amends the Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program to remove funding for gas lines and adds clean energy resilience eligible applications   
    • Amends the Mass Save program to phase out funding for fossil fuel systems