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2018 Regional Policy Plan amended  

Amendments to the 2018 Regional Policy Plan (RPP) that affirm the Cape Cod Commission's commitment to addressing climate change have been approved. 

It is widely understood that climate change is a critical challenge facing Cape Cod. With hundreds of miles of coastline, our region is vulnerable to the impacts of climate-related hazards. Mitigating the causes of climate change and adapting to its effects is a priority of the Cape Cod Commission.  

The amendments focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. A new climate mitigation goal and objectives will support, advance, and contribute to the Commonwealth’s interim and long-term greenhouse gas reduction goals and initiatives, including a state-wide net zero carbon target by 2050, promote low or no carbon transportation, energy use, energy generation technology, in addition to supporting and promoting opportunities for carbon sequestration. The amendments include new greenhouse gas emissions performance measures.

To accompany and support the amendments, the Commission developed a technical guidance document, as well as a revised Energy technical guidance document.

In July 2020, the Cape Cod Commission voted to postpone action on a citizens’ petition proposing climate-related amendments to the RPP, and voted to form a climate action subcommittee charged with considering amendments to the 2018 Regional Policy Plan and supporting a regional climate action plan process that considers both climate change mitigation and adaptation on Cape Cod. 

The Cape Cod Commission’s climate action planning process is well underway. The first-ever Cape Cod Climate Action Plan will be complete in Spring 2021. It will be informed by a greenhouse gas emissions inventory, legal and jurisdictional analysis, extensive community and stakeholder engagement and a Cape-wide resident survey, an economic and fiscal impact analysis, a mitigation and adaptation strategies database, and a robust implementation strategy.

The full Cape Cod Commission approved the amendments on January 19, 2021. The Assembly of Delegates approved the amendments on February 17, 2021, and the Barnstable County Board of Regional Commissioners approved the amended RPP ordinance on February 24, 2021.

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