Updating Our Laws

To cut climate-warming emissions, we need bold local action. In 2008, Massachusetts and Connecticut both took such action when they passed Global Warming Solutions Acts, which mandate cuts in climate-damaging emissions by 2050. Now we’re working to create enforceable climate laws in every New England state.

CLF in Action

CLF was instrumental in the passage of the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) in Massachusetts, which requires the state to ratchet down climate-damaging emissions each year. When the Commonwealth failed to fully enforce the law, CLF and our allies took them to court – and won. In 2017, the State issued new regulations that force power plants to cut their carbon pollution, signaling the end of fossil fuels in the Commonwealth.

But one state with an enforceable carbon mandate is not enough. Now, CLF is working to put strong climate laws like a Global Warming Solutions Act on the books in every state in New England. Legislation is currently being debated in Vermont, Rhode Island, and Maine.

What’s at Stake

Massachusetts’s Global Warming Solutions Act is one of the most robust climate change laws in the nation. It positions the Commonwealth as a leader in climate change solutions and a future built on clean renewable energy – and it serves as a model for federal action.

The law requires cuts in carbon emissions in accordance with sound science. That foundation provides a powerful catalyst for innovative approaches to meet the state’s climate goals and build a clean energy economy, creating new jobs and saving consumers money.

Climate change is a problem that can’t wait any longer. The last four years were the hottest four years in recorded history, and scientists warn that if we don’t take action soon, it will be too late to reverse the trend. Our health, our economy, and our environment are at risk. Every New England state needs to follow Massachusetts’s lead – creating enforceable limits on carbon pollution that ratchet down emissions year over year.