As a coastal state heavily dependent on fisheries and tourism, Maine sought guidance on the most effective strategies—including electrifying light- and heavy-duty fleets—to mitigate economic damage from climate change. While potential impacts to the state were clear, Maine needed a method to analyze the costs and benefits of potential solutions.
For the Governor’s Office for Policy Innovation and the Future, ERG worked with 200 stakeholders across Maine to develop and enhance tools to help prioritize greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies in the transportation sector. For light- and heavy-duty vehicles, ERG performed a consumer-level financial return-on-investment analysis, incorporating projected capital costs, maintenance costs, and fuel costs over their life cycles for both internal combustion engines and electric vehicles. This analysis will help Maine policymakers and planners chart a cost-effective course to reduce emissions from the transportation sector. ERG also performed a regional level cost-benefit analysis for EVs, which assessed health benefits associated with increased EV adoption rates. ERG estimated the value of health impacts (e.g., reduced instances of asthma, cancer) associated with criteria pollutants and the benefits associated with reduced GHG emissions, based on both the market price and the social cost of carbon.
ERG’s work provided Maine with scientifically defensible data and projections on the economic impacts of climate change, mitigation strategies, and adaptation strategies. Maine incorporated this information into Maine Won't Wait, a four-year action plan that aims to reduce Maine's carbon emissions and increase resilience to the impacts of a rapidly changing climate. The plan earned the 2022 Resilience & Sustainability Award from the American Planning Association as the premier state climate plan in the country.