Tips to ActOn Climate

Actonians emit about 10.2 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per capita. To put this number into context, this falls somewhere between the emissions levels of Somerville and Cambridge, which are 8.2 and 13.8 metric tons, respectively. Overall, per capita emissions in the U.S. are at 15.5 and the global average is about 4.8. Although the context and infrastructure in Acton may be different from those in Somerville or other parts of the world, there is a lot Actonians can do to reduce their emissions. 

Below are six actions Actonians can take to “ActOn” Climate. If you want to be more engaged with fellow Actonians taking action on climate check out Energize Acton!

1. Install clean heating and cooling in your home or business!

Start with a no-cost consultation with Abode with impartial technology experts and a marketplace of third-party vetted contractors, enabling residents and businesses to adopt clean heating and cooling technologies with confidence. 

Air source heat pumps and solar hot water systems are cost-effective, market-ready technologies that transform how homes use energy. These technologies can help save you money on your utility bills and also significantly help Acton decrease its overall carbon footprint, benefiting the community.

Start here: 


2. Need a new car? Consider going electric

 Just over half of Acton’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions come from the transportation sector; this is mostly from gas-powered vehicles on the road. The good news is that there are a lot of great choices on the market right now for Electric Vehicles (EVs), which release which release fewer GHGs per mile driven than gasoline-powered cars and may be more affordable than you think. Combined federal and state tax credits can reduce purchase costs by up to $10,000 and EVs can save as much as $1,200 per year in fuel costs, according to the Department of Energy. Visit Green Energy Consumers Alliance to learn more about the electric and hybrid vehicle options near you:

3. Opt-up to Acton Power Choice GREEN

Buildings are the second largest contributor to GHG emissions in Acton. One of the quickest and easiest ways to reduce emissions from this sector is by choosing Acton Power Choice (APC) GREEN, which supports the development of new renewable energy projects right here in New England. APC GREEN offers a fixed electricity supply price through September 2022 and makes it easy for residents or businesses to change program options (or to opt out) at any time and at no cost. The APC program has kept 14.5 million pounds of CO2 kept out of atmosphere to date! GREEN accounts (3% of all APC accounts) have saved 20% of those 14.5 million pounds! To learn more and to Opt Up visit:

4. Join the Clean Heating & Cooling Challenge

The Town of Acton has partnered with Abode to help residents transition to clean heating technologies. The Acton Clean Energy Challenge is a town-wide initiative providing no-cost consultations with impartial technology experts and a marketplace of third-party vetted contractors, enabling residents to adopt clean heating and cooling technologies with confidence. Schedule a free heat pump consultation here:

5. Install solar

Here are two steps you can take if you’re considering installing solar: 1. Find an experienced contractor. You can find tips on how to find a solar installer on the Eversource site here; 2. Explore your financial and incentive options to make installation more cost-effective. You can start here.

6. Producing more solar than you need? Learn what you can do with your Net Metering Credits

Already have solar? Don’t just let your excess electricity be wasted, know exactly what to do and decide the best option for you! Depending on the time of the year, your solar energy system may generate more electricity than you need. The excess energy generated is sent to your utility provider who will send you a credit that you can choose what to do with. You can use your credits to offset your future bills from Eversource OR you can give your credits to a different account. Both of these options require a submitted Schedule Z form that declares your choice. For more details about this process click here.

Cheat Sheets

Select Board member and Clean Energy Coach David Martin believes that electrification is key to avoiding the dire effects of climate change. He's also someone who likes to understand technical details. He learned about electrifying houses by spending a couple of years researching, planning , and managing two projects – his house in Acton Massachusetts, and his parent's house in rural Connecticut. Since the two projects were very different, the research and experience provided him with a broad understanding of practical issues. He's sharing that understanding in a guide, called the Electric Home Cheat Sheet. He has also written a similar Electric Car Cheat Sheet.

Electric Home Cheat Sheet 

Electric Vehicle Cheat Sheet