Join us for our installment of the Pacesetters Doing Business series featuring Boston Planning and Development Agency on December 7, 2023.
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Jenny Holaday will share her journey into leadership as President of Encore Boston Harbor and first woman to run a casino in Massachusetts.
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Encore Boston Harbor
Step into Winter Wonderland at our BIMA Holiday Gala. Gather your digital media and marketing peers for a night of networking and entertainment.
6:30pm - 9:30pm
Designed for mid-level managers and supervisors, this new certificate program addresses workplace well-being through unique, innovative, and actionable methods.
Join our Transformational DEI Certificate! Our comprehensive learning & development offerings are designed to connect and grow strong leaders who lead both inside and out of the office.
Our Women’s Leadership Program enables you to take your leadership to the next level by arming you with the most in-demand leadership toolkit.
Our Boston’s Future Leaders (BFL) program provides emerging leaders with a socially conscious and civically engaged leadership toolkit, as well as the opportunity to apply their knowledge through experiential assignments.
City Awake empowers young professionals in a variety of ways that encourages these rising leaders to stay invested in the region’s future success.
We are developing an ecosystem of corporations and partners with the influence and buying power to transform economic inclusion for minority business enterprises (MBEs).
The Fierce Urgency of Now Festival brings Boston’s diverse young professionals together with business leaders, organizations and their peers to build connection, advance careers and ignite positive change.
BIMA (the Boston Interactive Media Association) serves a vibrant community of like-minded professionals from agencies, brands, publishers, and ad-tech companies with business interests in the New England market.
For nearly 30 years, the Chamber’s Women’s Network has connected female professionals of all background and career levels. Today, our Women’s Network is the largest in New England, strengthening the professional networks of women each year.
The Massachusetts Apprentice Network convenes employers, training providers, and talent sources interested in developing and implementing apprenticeship programs in occupations across industries and statewide in fields such as tech, advanced manufacturing, healthcare, financial services, and more.
We support small business through public policy initiatives, events designed to connect small businesses in Greater Boston to their peers and established business leaders, professional development offerings, and free small business advising.
Explore our mission and values to better understand how we are leading the business community forward.
Our member directory is your resource to discover, connect, and engage with Boston’s businesses from every industry and sector.
Chamber Supports the Balanced Building Energy Code Straw Proposal to Help Progress Climate Goals
The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce submitted testimony expressing gratitude to the Department of Energy Resources for developing a balanced Building Energy Code Straw Proposal that makes progress towards our climate goals.
Using in-depth building code analysis developed since 2019, the approach taken by the Department considers the outcomes of building code updates, the needs of different building types, and lifecycle costs for building ownership. Importantly, the straw proposal notes that the goal of the energy code analysis is to achieve least-cost decarbonization.
With that goal in place, the Department’s Energy Efficiency Analysis conducted in tandem with the development of the straw proposal identifies a feasible path for our built environment to reduce emissions. Through this well-researched process, the Department offers three building code options that will drive emissions reductions from the building sector, use incentives to encourage a shift to electric, and recognize the current capabilities of New England’s power grid.
The Chamber supports many aspects of the straw proposal and urges the Department to maintain its balanced approach in the final regulations.
The straw proposal’s plan to update the residential stretch code for one and two family homes, town homes, and low-rise multi-family up to three stories largely strikes the correct balance between reducing emissions, feasibility, and cost factors. Under the proposal, builders and homeowners will meaningfully reduce emissions and be protected from broad, one-size-fits-all mandates or prohibitions.
Specifically, both the stretch and opt-in proposals will reduce emissions by adjusting the Home Energy Rating System (HERS) standard and providing incentives to influence homeowners’ choices. Importantly, nearly 300 of the state’s 351 municipalities already adopted the stretch code, so changes to the stretch code will impact a large swath of the state.
In developing the proposal specifics, we urge the Department also to recognize current limitations, particularly on the power grid’s capabilities and in different living environments.
Like the residential changes, the proposed updates to the commercial building code also will result in demonstrable emissions reductions while maintaining flexibility for builders. The proposal achieves this balance by emphasizing demand reduction, requiring adaptability for an electric future, and recognizing the nuances of building use.
The Department’s proposal does acknowledge that the proposed codes would increase costs for small office buildings. Given the pressures on small businesses right now, and potential additional pressures from policies like the tax on income over $1 million, anything that raises the costs of production – and therefore occupancy costs – should be carefully reviewed.
Worth noting, the update to our building codes is only one piece of the overall effort to achieve our emissions reductions. The Commonwealth continues its aggressive procurement of renewable energy to ensure our electric grid provides cleaner energy to our future electrified buildings. This necessary clean energy faces years of development and construction and will require further upgrades to the distribution system. We must be mindful that the transition of our electric grid and built environment to net-zero emissions will take time and the Department should continue to carefully consider real-world costs and limitations while formulating any new requirements on buildings.
The Chamber also recognizes that the move towards own-source energy has a new urgency and significance given global events and the U.S. decision to discontinue Russian oil imports. We believe that reducing and eliminating reliance on foreign energy sources is necessary, but our infrastructure cannot handle an immediate transition. The proposed code changes move Massachusetts towards these goals, while also recognizing the reality of our system’s capabilities and cost impacts.