The 350 Mass Science Working Group was formed in November 2020. Its mission is to collect and share current and emerging scientific information about climate change and its impacts on the Commonwealth; and about technical and social initiatives and policies to mitigate its effects. The Working Group collects reports and data (see Reference Materials below). It also organizes webinars and other outreach materials; and supports 350 Mass Nodes and other working groups with their needs and requests for scientific information. It keeps contact with other organizations with similar missions such as the Elders Climate Action Mass. Research Group, the Union of Concerned Scientists, and local universities. A scientific background is not necessary; we welcome members with a wide range of experience including communications, social studies of science, economics, and policy.
Contact person and chair: Philip Vergragt [email protected]
- March 14, 2022. "Home Energy Retrofitting: Your House, Your Neighbor’s House, and the 350 Mass Campaign." The 350 Mass Science Working Group, the Bring The GND Home Campaign, and our esteemed speakers discussed housing retrofits. The webinar was designed to help 350 Mass members and other attendees with decisions about retrofitting their own homes, as well as encouraging others in our community. Speakers also addressed the systemic changes required to achieve large-scale, equitable housing electrification, and the political and legislative efforts of our 350 Mass statewide campaign. Overall, this event informed climate advocates and consumers in general about practical, technological and financial considerations of home energy retrofitting. View the archived webinar here.
- November 12, 2021. "Avoiding The Unintended Consequences of Fluorinated Gas Emissions From Residential Heat Pumps." The 350 Mass Science Working Group and Statewide Legislative Team held a webinar to learn about the challenges and opportunities with the use of heat pumps to decarbonize residential heating. In our campaign “Bring the Green New Deal Home” 350 Mass advances the replacement of oil and gas heating by heat pumps, which also act as coolants, and which should run on renewable electricity in order to minimize GHG emissions. The webinar discussed the use of refrigerants in heat pumps—which themselves are often potent GHG emitters. The featured presenter was Dr. Jonathan Krones, assistant professor of the practice in engineering at Boston College. Outside of the university, he has experience working and consulting in energy, sustainability, and climate policy at local, state, and federal levels. Dr. Krones authored the Non-Energy Sector Report, A Technical Report of the Massachusetts 2050 Decarbonization Roadmap Study, published in December 2020. View the archived webinar here. All of 350 Mass' archived videos are available here.
The Science Working Group has prepared lists of references and resources on key topics, including explaining and monitoring the climate crisis, scientific and technological developments to address the crisis, and planning reports proposing strategies at the global, national, and local levels. The collected bibliographies relate to the climate crisis generally, and to the foci of 350 Mass’ campaigns: housing, transportation, and energy. We are pleased to offer these materials to 350 Mass members and allies. The volume of climate-related information is huge and growing; these lists are not meant to be comprehensive. We will update them regularly, and we welcome recommendations for additional references from readers, who can post recommendations in Slack, Channel #wg_science.
Contact person: Ralph Halpern [email protected]
REFERENCE MATERIALS: CLIMATE OVERVIEW. In this document we highlight selected reports, articles, and organizations concerned with the status of the climate crisis, overall strategies for change, and plans of action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and carbon in the atmosphere.
RECOMMENDED RESOURCES ON THE ISSUES AND SOLUTIONS. This document draws from the file, References: Climate Overview, to provide some introductory materials to orient readers to the crisis, recommendations and reports for change, and ongoing developments.
REFERENCE MATERIALS: HOUSING & BUILDINGS. In this document we highlight selected reports, articles, and organizations concerned with transforming the housing and buildings sector to green energy.
Related document: Health Risks: Gas in the Home
Related document: Retrofitting and Electrifying Your Home
REFERENCE MATERIALS: TRANSPORTATION. In this document we highlight selected reports, articles, and organizations concerned with transforming the transportation sector to green energy.
Related Document: Health Risks: Transportation & Internal Combustion Engines
REFERENCE MATERIALS: ENERGY. In this document we highlight selected reports, articles, and organizations concerned with transforming the energy sector to renewable sources and away from fossil fuels.
Related Document: How to Talk about Hydrogen. February 2022. Includes recommendations and references.
BLOG POST, 350 Mass' Power Lines
Posted September 13, 2021: "IPCC Speaks Truth to the World." written by Philip Vergragt and Ralph Halpern, for the Science Working Group. Summary: The recent IPCC Science Report is a valuable wake-up call; it is the first of three reports comprising the IPCC's Sixth Assessment Report; the subsequent reports in 2022 will consider human repercussions and responses.
The Science Working Group is also active on Slack, join us here!
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