2024 Maryland General Assembly comes to a close

April 8th, 2024, marked the end of the 2024 Maryland General Assembly session. Thanks to all of our Maryland Nature Forward members and supporters* for sending a combined record of 233 letters your respective MD legislators to urging them to protect Maryland’s climate goals. Two of Nature Forward’s priority bills (WARMTH Act and EmPOWER Reform) we supported passed, and one we were against it (Critical Infrastructure Streamlining Act / Data Center bill) unfortunately passed. See more information of each of these bills below. Read more on all environmental bills in MDGA24 via a summary report by MDLCV here.

*A special thanks to a team of volunteers who helped us analyze legislation and write testimony progress through the General Assembly: Sheila Igoe and Debra Street.

WARMTH Act (HB397 / SB570) will continue to increase incentives to reduce greenhouse gasses and help low-income families with the energy transition.

EmPOWER Reform (HB864) will more closely align the gas and electric companies to MD’s climate goals.

The WARMTH Act and the EmPOWER Reform now await the Governor’s approval.

The Critical Infrastructure Streamlining Act of 2024 (SB0474 / HB0579) which Nature Forward opposed, unfortunately passed. This bill will allow data centers to use air polluting diesel generators, going against Maryland’s climate goals. We will continue to advocate for more stricter and environmentally aligned measures for data centers in Maryland and the DMV Region. Read more on our recent blog about Data Centers in MD.