Energy Reduction Plan for State Buildings

Last updated: November 25, 2019

Program Overview

Implementing Sector:State
Category:Regulatory Policy
Incentive Type:Energy Standards for Public Buildings
Web Site:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:Solar - Passive, Solar Water Heat, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Geothermal Heat Pumps, Daylighting, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small)
Eligible Efficiency Technologies:Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
Energy Reduction Goal/Requirement:Reduce energy consumption at state buildings by 35% by FY 2020 (using an FY 2004 baseline)
Green Building Requirement:New construction and significant renovations over 20,000 square feet must meet Massachusetts LEED plus standards. Projects less than 20,000 square feet must meet minimum energy performance standards established by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Sustainable Design Roundtable.
Equipment Efficiency Requirement:Agencies shall adopt, where applicable, energy-efficient equipment
Renewable Energy Requirement:30% renewable energy by 2030


Name:Executive Order 484 (2007)
Date Enacted:4/18/2007
Effective Date:4/18/2007
Name:M.G.L. ch. 25A, § 14 et seq.
Date Enacted:7/2/2008
Name:Executive Order 515 (2009)
Date Enacted:10/27/2009


In April 2007, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick signed Executive Order 484, titled “Leading by Example: Clean Energy and Efficient Buildings.” This order establishes numerous energy targets and mandates for state government buildings under control of the executive office. These include the following:

- Overall energy consumption at state-owned and state-leased buildings should be reduced by 20% by FY 2012 and 35% by FY 2020. Such reductions shall be based on an FY 2004 baseline and measured on a BTU per square foot basis.

- Reduce state government unadjusted greenhouse gas emissions from the 2002 baseline by 25% by 2012, 40% by 2020, and 80% by 2050.

- All new construction and significant renovation projects over 20,000 square feet must meet the Massachusetts LEED Plus green building standard established by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Sustainable Design Roundtable. For projects smaller than 20,000 square feet, all projects shall at least meet the minimum energy performance standards established by the Roundtable.

- Agencies shall also adopt, where applicable, specific energy efficiency measures including but not limited to the use of programmable thermostats, the use of motion sensors or timing devices in rooms that are used only intermittently the purchase and use of ENERGY STAR certified appliances and office equipment, and the exclusive use of efficient lighting.

The order also directs the state government to procure 15% of agency annual electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2012 and 30% by 2020. This "mandate" may be achieved through the procurement of renewable energy supply, the purchase of renewable energy certificates (RECs), and/or through the production of on-site renewable power. A program progress report was published in 2014.

Massachusetts enacted legislation in July 2008 (S.B. 2768) that authorized state agencies, building authorities and local governments to (1) contract for energy conservation projects that have a total project cost of $100,000 or less, directly and without further solicitation, with electric and gas utilities, their subcontractors and other providers of such energy conservation projects, and to pay for such energy conservation projects through additions to their monthly utility bills. Also, S.B. 2768 authorized state agencies, building authorities and local governments, under certain conditions, to acquire from contracts photovoltaic (PV) systems, with a total project cost that is less than $ 100,000, for onsite use of the energy generated by these panels from contracts procured by the operational services division.

Furthermore, Executive Order 515 of 2009 provides additional guidance on the procurement of energy-efficient products and directs the Environmental Preferable Products (EPP) Program to develop energy performance standards for products that take into account initial and lifetime energy operating costs. It requires agencies to procure ENERGY STAR HVAC equipment, office equipment, and appliances (as long as it does not cost-prohibitive over the life of the appliance) and requires staff to be trained on power-saving functions and benefits.

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