2024 Maryland General Assembly Legislative Priorities 

Energy is the theme of this year’s top 2024 Maryland General Assembly legislative priorities. Read up on each bill below.You can TAKE ACTION NOW by using our simple form at the end of this post to send a letter to your MD state legislators telling them why it’s important to you that they support (or oppose) one or more bills. Once you put your address into the form, it will show you who your Delegates & Senator are. You can come back to this page throughout the session to get updates and send another message as bills pass or not. 

WARMTH Act (Support) HB397 / SB570

Public Utilities – Thermal Energy Network Systems – Authorization and Establishment (Working for Accessible Renewable Maryland Thermal Heat (WARMTH) Act)

This bill will designate money from the Inflation Reduction Act to install running, networked geothermal systems to heat and cool buildings and homes in target low-income and under-resourced communities. MD has a goal of reducing greenhouse gases by 60% of its 2006 levels by 2031. This bill will help start a pilot to electrify low-income homes so that they are no longer reliant on gas. Senate hearing: 2/29 @1pm; House Hearing: 2/22 @1pm. Fact Sheet.

EmPOWER Reform (Support) HB864 

This bill will require electric and gas companies along with the Department of Housing and Community Development to set a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These updated changes to the updated 2008 EmPOWER program will more closely align with MD’s climate goals. Senate Hearing: TBD; House Hearing: 2/29 @1pm.

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Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity and Related Approvals – Definition of Generating Station (Critical Infrastructure Streamlining Act of 2024) (Oppose) SB0474 / HB0579 

This bill will allow Maryland to add more data centers by removing the requirement that the Public Service Commission review all backup generator power facilities. Data centers don’t need a special exemption! For the past several years, data centers have been built with little restriction across Northern Virginia, causing significant loss of tree canopy, increased impervious surface and stormwater runoff, increased reliance on fossil fuels and significant water consumption. Northern Virginia has the largest concentrations of data centers in the world, we don’t need to add more environmentally harmful data centers in MD! Senate hearing: 2/22 @1pm; House Hearing: 2/22 @1pm. Read more on Northern Virginia Data center environmental concerns