Impact of Advocacy

Support Our Advocacy Work 

From defending endangered species to mitigating climate change impacts, one of the most effective ways to protect the nature of Massachusetts is through sound environmental policy. Mass Audubon’s Advocacy Department works with other conservation organizations, the Governor’s office, legislators, and citizen groups to help shape and strengthen environmental laws and regulations at the state, federal and local levels of government.

Accomplishments in FY 2016 include, but are not limited to:

  • Continued to advocate for 1% of the state’s operating budget to go to environmental programs, ultimately securing a commitment from Governor Baker to meet this goal by the end of his term.
  • Lobbied for our priority legislation that would better prepare Massachusetts for the impacts of climate change. Governor Baker signed an Executive Order directing state agencies to take many of the actions our legislation recommended, which is a positive step forward in protecting Massachusetts’ infrastructure, public safety, and natural resources, but we continue to advocate for a long-lasting statutory requirement on adaptation planning.  
  • Continued to grow our 46-member Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Coalition, on which Mass Audubon’s Advocacy Director Jack Clarke serves as founding co-chair.
  • Served as a state-appointed member of the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) Implementation Advisory Committee working for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Through the Shaping the Future of Your Community program we conducted more than 20 workshops and reached nearly 650 individuals. We also provided in-depth technical assistance for cities and towns in need of sustainable development guidance.
  • Continued to serve as a founding member of the Community Preservation Act Coalition Steering Committee, working with 161 communities to protect open space, provide for affordable housing, and preserve historic resources in the Commonwealth.
  • Participated in the public review process of natural gas pipeline expansion projects proposed in Massachusetts, which we oppose. Two of three pipeline proposals we opposed have been canceled.

Honors 

Special Appointments

Mass Audubon’s Advocacy Director Jack Clarke was appointed to or continued to serve on the following groups:

  • Massachusetts Coastal Erosion Commission as the “environmental representative” and gubernatorial appointee.
  • Massachusetts Ocean Management Advisory Commission as the “environmental representative,” gubernatorial appointee, and chairman.
  • Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection’s Stakeholder Advisory Group working on the implementation of Governor Baker’s Executive Order No 562 designed to “Reduce Unnecessary regulatory Burden.”
  • Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection’s Advisory Committee working on state and federal water quality management.