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December e-Newsletter

As 2023 draws to a close, the Cape Cod Climate Change Collaborative wishes to express our gratitude to our strategic partners, collaborators, and supporters. We are especially grateful to the anonymous donor who has agreed to match up to $25,000 in gifts we receive by Dec. 31.

We hope you will help us leverage this gift by giving what you can

We look forward to working with you in 2024 as we continue to address the impact of climate change on Cape Cod.


Happy Holidays!

On behalf of The Board and Advisory Council of the Cape Cod Climate Change Collaborative,

Dorothy, Janet, Maggie, Beth, Dan & Miranda

Regional News

Another Cape Success

Zero Emission Vehicle Transition Plan is Out

Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority

partnered with Hatch Associates to develop a ZEV Fleet Transition Plan & Regional Support Study, which has just been released.

This document outlines their vision for the next three years, including plans to improve transit services and connectivity.

View the plan

Applications open for MassHCIC All-Stars

The Massachusetts Housing & Climate Innovation Center's All-Stars Program is a great opportunity for college students and Cape Cod communities to work together on housing and climate initiatives.

This summer, 8 students have the chance to spend the summer with a host family on the Cape and use MassHCIC's resources to develop a project at the intersection of affordable housing, environmental sustainability and climate resilience. At the same time, MassHCIC will pair the students up with communities to make an impact in their regions.

Pitch a project or apply

Applications Open for 2024 Session of Cape Cod Climate Ambassadors Program

An exciting initiative to educate, engage, and empower young people on Cape Cod to work together to combat climate change.

Students in grades 9-12 who would like to develop a better understanding of climate change and learn individual and collective actions to bring about change. This year’s program includes eight meetings (both virtual and in-person), from January to May 2024. Applications are due by December 22, 2023. 

Learn more & apply online

Partner Spotlight

Q+A with Heather Goldstone

Miranda had a chance to catch up with Heather Goldstone, Chief Communications Officer of Woodwell Climate Research Center, who attended the United Nations Conference on Climate Change, COP28 in the United Arab Emirates.

MDM: Why is what happens at COP important for the Cape and our region?

HG: Connections between the Cape and COP run in both directions. COP agreements are sources of motivation and guidance for climate action at all levels, with the potential to influence everything from state climate targets to international investment in renewable energy. In fact, the Paris Agreement was the inspiration for the Cape Cod Climate Change Collaborative, which has become a powerful catalyst for climate action in our region.

Making Sense of COP28

It’s also worth recognizing that our region, in particular the Cape’s science institutions, are important to COP. The Collaborative’s own Rich Delaney played a role in getting oceans into a COP decision for the first time in 2015. And last year, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution spearheaded the first Oceans Pavilion at COP. Two years ago, Woodwell Climate partnered with the COP presidency to assess climate information needs of G20 nations, and we have provided technical advice to negotiating delegations. In a nod to the importance of our region's expertise, Senator Ed Markey met with Woodwell Climate scientists at COP28 and discussed important mitigation measures. 

MDM: Describe Woodwell's role and participation in this COP and how it was different from other COPs you have attended.

HG: Woodwell Climate has had a delegation at every COP. In fact, our founder George Woodwell and Kiliparti Ramakrishna, an early staff member now on our Board of Directors, played important roles in the development of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change—the treaty that called for ongoing processes of scientific synthesis and regular policy negotiations to address climate change. This year, for the first time, we had our own meeting and presentation space, which enabled us to host partners and colleagues for both public events and private discussions aimed at accelerating solutions. 

MDM: What was your overall impression of what the meeting accomplished?

HG: This COP was a roller coaster. Before it even started, the meeting was surrounded by controversy about UAE leadership and the role of fossil fuel producers in the negotiations. But the agreement—on the first day—to operationalize Loss and Damage was an important step forward on the climate justice front that made for a celebratory start. There were other important commitments made during the course of the conference, including tripling renewable energy, cutting methane emissions by 30% by 2030, and halting or reversing deforestation by 2030. While “transitioning away from fossil fuels in energy systems” is what we’ve known for years needs to happen, the inclusion of this direct language is a first. Still, much more is needed than the words and commitments in this decision. 

Stay Warm & Save Energy This Winter

Tips from Cape Light Compact

With the cold winter months setting in, now is the perfect time to start thinking about making energy-efficiency upgrades to your home. The Cape Light Compact has available offers for air sealing and insulation improvements, as well as rebates on energy-efficient heat pumps and appliances. Income-qualified customers may be eligible for even more savings. Click here to learn more!

Start the process now by scheduling a NO-COST Home Energy Assessment. Sign up online using the link or by calling 1-800-797-6699.

Sign up now!

Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB) Approves Avangrid Onshore Renewable Energy

The Park City Wind Project, an offshore wind farm that is proposed to produce 800 megawatts of renewable energy, has passed an important regulatory step in its permitting process. The Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB), a state regulatory board, has approved the plans of the developer, Avangrid, to bring the renewable energy onshore at Craigville Beach in Centerville and route it to its substation, connecting it to the electric grid.

Read the WCAI article

The EFSB voted unanimous approval after an extensive and exhaustive process and a five-and-a-half hour hearing on Monday, December 11, which included hearing environmental and health concerns by Barnstable residents and others. The EFSB ruling requires Avangrid, who owns the project, to meet with Barnstable town officials to address those concerns. Currently, Avangrid does not have a contract to sell electricity generated by the Park City Wind.

The Cape Cod Climate Change Collaborative submitted a letter in support of offshore wind as part of the EFSB process, as the development of offshore wind is a key component to meeting the Massachusetts climate goals. Although leadership of the Climate Collaborative is of the opinion that the overall leasing and procurement process could be improved, we believe the environmental and safety concerns have been thoroughly addressed. The renewable energy to be produced by this project will power approximately 400,000 homes per year and cut greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 1.59 million tons annually, the equivalent of taking more than 310,000 cars off the road. As the Cape and Islands region is so vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, we feel moving as quickly as possible to reducing the pollution from these heat-trapping gasses is critical.

State News

Massachusetts Climate Report Card

Massachusetts has made progress as a trailblazer in the clean energy transition, but there’s more work to do. The Report Card was one of 39 recommendations of Climate Chief Melissa Hoffer’s to Governor Healey to track progress against 2025, 2030 and 2050 mandated emissions reductions. The report shows that across sectors, inflation, supply chain issues and workforce shortage are roadblocks to meeting targets. The report looks at progress toward targets in Transportation, Environmental Justice, Buildings, Power, Natural and Working Lands along with Climate Adaptation and Resilience.

Read more

ResilientCoasts Launches

The Healey Administration has announced the formation of a new state-level program for addressing climate change impacts along the 1500 miles of Massachusetts’ coastline. Called “ResilientCoasts,” the program will use a multi-prong approach to identify and then activate effective long-term solutions to the coastal threats of erosion and flooding. These threats stem from rising sea levels and increasing storm surges resulting from the warming air and water temperatures. Led by the Commonwealth’s Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM), the program will also create a Chief Coastal Resilience Officer position that provide cross-agency coordination

CZM’s unique experience and expertise with technical assistance, funding, partnerships, and regulatory review to address coastal threats will allow the administration to act quickly and effectively in addressing the coastal impacts of climate change. 

Several features of ReslientCoasts stand out as potentially particularly promising for advancing coastal climate solutions on Cape Cod:

  • The initiative will group all 78 coastal towns across the Commonwealth into geographic regions, “Coastal Resilience Districts,” that share similar landscape characteristics and face similar climate hazards. One such District could well be all Cape Cod towns. Treating the Cape as a single, united District would enhance multi-municipal communication, coordination and cooperation. It would also help to amplify our ability to advocate for effective solutions that benefit all Cape Cod towns. 
  • The program will then help the communities within each District to develop tailored policies and strategies to address the impacts of climate change, and to pursue federal funds to put those strategies into action. 
  • ResilientCoasts will incentivize the use of nature-based solutions to promote and build coastal resilience. Moving away from “hard” solutions, such as seawalls and revetments, to these newer solutions, mimicking natural processes, should provide the Cape with long-term resilience while simultaneously enhancing local biodiversity.
  • The possibility of creating access to significant federal and state funding for coastal resilience projects, one of the program’s stated goals, could be a game changer for coastal communities.
  • The program will also seek to streamline the existing labyrinth-like permitting process which currently adds time and expense to projects that we can no longer afford. 

While still in the planning stages, we expect that the Administration will move quickly in fully developing the program for a roll-out in 2024. Stay tuned for details and we will be closely monitoring program activity over the next months.

National & Global News

Climate Change Impacts, Risks and Responses

The Fifth National Climate Assessment

Every four years, a National Climate Assessment (NCA)is legally mandated to be delivered to Congress and the President. The most recent one was released on November 14, 2023 with 14 Federal agencies contributing. Since the first NCA in 2000, the report has served as an important tool to help the government and scientists to track climate changes over time. The report shows that the Northeast has had some of the highest rates of sea level rise and ocean warming in the US. These exceptional increases compared to other parts of the nation are projected to continue through the end of the century.

Read more

Related Story: National Climate Assessment Shows Extreme Precipitation Has Increased Most in the Northeast

A recent National Climate Assessment reveals a sharp increase in extreme precipitation in this region - more than anywhere else in the U.S. Check out the full report on CAI.

Read the story

We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is reduce the Cape & Islands' contributions to climate change and protect our region from its potentially devastating impacts.

We depend upon the generosity of our stakeholders to conduct our work. All donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.


We welcome climate news from your home, school, business, town, faith community, or organization. Please submit your news, events, or article ideas to

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