Salem completed a 696-kilowatt solar array on the Witchcraft Heights Elementary School in August 2018.

Salem and Wellesley are among the eight recipients of the 12th annual Leading by Example Awards, which recognize policies and programs that reduce environmental impacts associated with government operations.

The awards honor initiatives that advance or result in significant energy and emissions reductions, renewable energy installations, water conservation, sustainable landscaping, and other efforts to mitigate environmental impact.

During a ceremony at the State House on Dec. 6, Salem received an award for its leadership on clean energy and sustainability.
Its programs include an active Sustainability, Energy, and Resiliency Committee, 27 energy efficiency projects (including LED streetlight retrofits) that save an estimated 4 million kilowatts annually – the equivalent of removing 669 cars from the roads – a new environmentally preferable buy-recycled city purchasing policy, a growing citywide bike share program, and more.

Wellesley received an award for its innovative surplus food recovery program, which donates food to a local nonprofit to support families in need, its active Sustainable Energy Committee, a solar initiative that has resulted in rooftop solar panels on 98 residences, reducing greenhouse gas emissions at municipal buildings by one-quarter over the past decade, and more.

Salem became a Department of Energy Resources designated Green Community in 2010, and Wellesley did so in 2017.

Westwood Town Energy Manager Thomas Philbin received an individual award for a wide array of clean energy initiatives and broad stakeholder collaboration across the town. The award recognizes his efforts advancing the installation of 780 kilowatts of solar in Westwood, extensive energy efficiency projects, initiating efforts for the DOER Green Community designation, planning for future “near zero energy” buildings, and more. He is a recipient of a DOER Green Communities Energy Manager grant award.

Awards were also presented to the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council in the state agency category; Salem State University and UMass Amherst Landscape Services in the public higher education category; and James Latini and his team at the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance Capitol Complex Operations Team in the individual category.

The Leading by Example program is administered by the Department of Energy Resources and works collaboratively with state agencies and public colleges and universities to advance clean energy and sustainable practices that reduce the environmental impacts of state government operations.

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