Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA)

Ground-mounted solar array at North River Wildlife Sanctuary

The Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) requires a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 10-15% below 1990 levels by 2020 and 80% by 2050.

Mass Audubon supported its passage and continues to assist with its implementation, serving on the state’s Implementation Advisory Committee.

Baseline Greenhouse Gas Emissions

State government agencies have provided baseline numbers for 1990 emission levels and expected 2020 levels based on current trends. These figures provide the basis for limiting future emissions. Mass Audubon submitted comments helped persuade the state to include the carbon sequestration value of forests and other natural areas in the Baseline Report. Mass Audubon also commented on state regulations on greenhouse gas emissions.

Low Carbon Fuel Standards

Petroleum-based transportation fuels account for one third of total greenhouse gas emissions in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern United States. The high-carbon intensity of these fuels makes the transportation sector the region's largest and fastest-growing source of climate pollution. In 2010, Mass Audubon submitted comments on the Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management.

Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee

Mass Audubon served on the Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee, which ensured that the GWSA included measures to help people and nature adapt to climate change impacts that are inevitable even if greenhouse gas emissions were stopped immediately. Learn more in the Massachusetts Climate Change Advisory Report (September 2011).