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Climate change brain drain in Baker administration  

In a video on YouTube, [former undersecretary for climate change David] Ismay said Massachusetts doesn’t have many big sources of emissions left to target, and is left with changing the lifestyles of ordinary people. “There is no bad guy left, at least in Massachusetts, to point the finger at, turn the screws on, and break their will so they stop emitting,” he said. “That’s you. We have to break your will. I can’t even say that publicly.”

Credit:  Bruce Mohl | CommonWealth Magazine | Apr 28, 2022 | commonwealthmagazine.org ~~

Gov. Charlie Baker lost another key aide on the climate change front, as Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides said she is leaving the administration next week.

Theoharides has been an emerging star in the Baker administration, the face of its efforts to build out the offshore wind industry and address climate change. She stepped into the job exactly three years ago after first joining the administration in 2016. She declined to say where she is headed, but departures like hers are not unusual in an administration in its final year on the job.

Beth Card, the undersecretary of environmental policy and climate resilience, is stepping in to fill Theoharides’s shoes. Card joined the administration last year after David Ismay, the then-undersecretary for climate change, left following comments he made to the Vermont Climate Council suggesting that Massachusetts residents were going to be squeezed financially as the state tries to meet its emission reduction targets.

In a video on YouTube, Ismay said Massachusetts doesn’t have many big sources of emissions left to target, and is left with changing the lifestyles of ordinary people. “There is no bad guy left, at least in Massachusetts, to point the finger at, turn the screws on, and break their will so they stop emitting,” he said. “That’s you. We have to break your will. I can’t even say that publicly.”

Ismay also expressed frustration at the challenge of getting offshore wind farms and transmission lines built. “We can’t have no offshore wind, no transmission, no solar, and have clean energy,” Ismay said. “Something has to give. There has to be some mechanism we trust to find a place to site a transmission line.”

Some thought Ismay was only stating the obvious, but his comments irked the governor and Ismay submitted his resignation.

Card came to the administration from the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, where she served as director of environment and regulatory affairs. Prior to joining the MWRA, she worked at the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection for over six years as deputy and assistant commissioner.

Source:  Bruce Mohl | CommonWealth Magazine | Apr 28, 2022 | commonwealthmagazine.org

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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