MAPC Clean Energy Programs Review

EBP (formerly EDR Group) conducted a two-year review examining the effectiveness of the (Boston) Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) portfolio of community-oriented Clean Energy activities and programs, under funding by the Barr Foundation. 

MAPC serves 101 diverse urban, suburban and exurban municipalities in eastern Massachusetts. Its clean energy services include:

Advocacy: Advocating for Net Zero policy, standards and programs at local and state levels; Equity issues in climate change; Building Codes for climate change; statewide policies for utility energy efficiency/demand response programs; energy storage;  resiliency of electricity and other vital networks.

Cooperative planning: Integrating ground-up and top-down planning; workgroups with municipal officials to develop consistent policies and procedures to minimize rationalize and unify energy-related permit processes; regional cooperative planning for energy and water issues related to climate change,

Technical Assistance: Municipal energy & climate planning, Local Energy Action Program (LEAP), green municipal electricity aggregation; Green Communities support; shared energy staffing services; other Technical Assistance to municipalities

Education/Information:  Serve as a central information resource for municipalities, Advanced vehicle technologies, Clean Heating and Cooling, Solar Contracting & Best Practices

Procurement: LED Streetlight Retrofits, Collective Procurement clean vehicles – new and retrofitted,

EBP's evaluation focused on examining the “what” and the “how” of MAPC’s clean activities.  The “what” included MAPC’s technical and operational achievements and annual improvements in energy, demand, and greenhouse gas reductions.

The “how” focused on MAPC’s  strategies to inform, enlist, motivate, and assist community officials and residents to undertake effective local sustainability actions;  to develop regional and statewide coalitions for advancing clean energy programs and policy to decarbonize the Massachusetts energy environment. EBP reviewed program goals, achievements over time, increasing energy, demand, GHG reductions, appropriateness of calculation methodologies and results. The firm also interviewed MAPC staff, as well as municipal officials on substantive issues, such as the effectiveness of its collective LED streetlight purchase program, green municipal aggregation technical assistance, and MAPC’s collaborative responsive approaches to working with a range of actors at the local regional and state levels.