Massachusetts Campaigns

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Protecting Our Health from Toxic Chemicals

Toxic chemicals surround us—in our air, water, homes, and workplaces. Many chemicals used in everyday products, like plastics, cosmetics, toys,  and furniture, increase the risk of serious illnesses.

Clean Water Action is working to reduce toxic chemicals in our homes, workplaces and communities. This year, we are asking Massachusetts authorities to:

In 2020-2021, Clean Water Action coordinated a state-wide effort to get Massachusetts leaders to address PFAS, a set of chemicals that have contaminated water, soil, and air throughout our state. Clean Water Action successfully got strong recommendations into the state’s PFAS Interagency Task Force report. The Massachusetts Attorney General filed a lawsuit against PFAS manufacturers, and Massachusetts added PFAS to the state’s list of Toxic and Hazardous Chemicals.

In the 2021-22 Massachusetts legislative session, Clean Water Action supported four bills to eliminate PFAS from consumer products such as food packaging, clothing, personal care products, and fire fighting gear.  These bills garnered significant support but were not passed into law. However, Massachusetts legislators have announced that they are likely to file a comprehensive PFAS bill /bills in 2023.   CWA is committed to working with the Legislature to make sure that the strongest possible bills are introduced in January 2023, with prompt action by the Legislature.

In 2021, Clean Water Action won a big victory when the Massachusetts Legislature passed a law banning 11 dangerous flame retardants and giving the state the authority to restrict the use of additional flame retardants. 

Learn more about PFAS here.

Clean Energy and Climate Justice

The way we currently produce and use energy in the U.S. significantly contributes to the climate crisis and pollutes our water, air and communities. It also disproportionately harms low-income communities and communities of color. We believe that frontline and EJ communities should be protected and prioritized when it comes to addressing climate challenges. Many BIPOC and low-income communities struggle with high asthma rates and a lack of access to clean water and healthy foods. These are examples of environmental injustice. Clean Water strives to center the needs of underserved and marginalized communities in decision-making processes and work with trusted community leaders to address environmental and health issues caused by pollution and climate change. Clean Water Action and Clean Water Fund are advancing solutions that reduce pollution in Massachusetts and make a clean energy future available to all. This includes:

  • Growing the green economy--including wind energy, energy efficiency and affordable public transit--and making it accessible to all communities;
  • Fighting for a just transition to clean energy while opposing systemic environmental injustices and expansion of polluting fossil fuels;
  • Ensuring a voice for marginalized communities during policy-making that affects them;

Putting Water First in Massachusetts

Water is a human right. Clean Water Action is committed to making sure that all communities have access to clean and safe drinking water. Learn more below.

Zero Waste in MA

Our current 'materials economy' funnels enormous amounts of waste into toxic landfills and incinerators, destroying items of value while polluting our air, water, food systems and bodies.  Clean Water Action has been working for decades to create a fair and sustainable “circular economy.”  This includes:

  • Supporting local activists who are working for a just transition away from landfills and incinerators in their communities towards a zero waste solutions to our waste crisis, such as those in Saugus, MA who are fighting to shut down the oldest incinerator in the country and in Taunton, MA who are fighting to stop a sludge incinerator from being built in their community;
  • Pressing the state to employ zero waste principles and go beyond the anemic goals of the 2030 Solid Waste Master Plan; and
  • Calling for enforcement of the state’s waste bans which would reduce our waste by at least 40%.