Preserving our Environment


Fast Facts:

  • Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change
  • Longtime opponent of the proposed Weymouth Compressor Station
  • Supports divesting from non-renewable fuels and investing in sustainable, clean energy
  • Advocates for the preservation of open space and natural habitats
  • Endorsed by the Environmental League of Massachusetts. See our list of endorsements here.

Proud to be endorsed by

Environmental League of Massachusetts

Mass Organization of State Engineers and Scientists

Reaching a 100% Renewable Future

  • Supports expanding our Renewable Energy Portfolio, which involves procuring more megawatts of wind, solar, and other clean energies so that our resources are eventually 100% renewable. This means setting aggressive timelines so that Massachusetts can meet emissions reduction targets and eliminate our carbon footprint as fast as possible.

Energy Storage

  • Supports investment in energy storage to complement the expansion of renewable energy sources. Energy storage is a significant strategic opportunity because it can improve grid operations, provide backup power through storms, and benefit the local economy. Ratepayer cost benefits of energy storage are associated with reduced peak demand, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, reduced cost of renewables integration, and increased grid flexibility and resilience.

Playing an Active Role

  • As the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change, Senator O’Connor plays a hands-on role in the final approval of clean energy legislation. He is often appointed to conference committees to consolidate the House and Senate versions of climate change legislation and work to keep strong provisions intact for final passage into law.

Fighting the Compressor Station

  • Since the gas company Enbridge first approached the Town of Weymouth in 2015 with a proposal to build a compressor station, Patrick (who was then Weymouth Town Council President) was one of the first to reject the project. Since then, he has remained steadfast in his opposition through action, advocacy, and legislative procedure.
  • In June of 2018, the State Senate debated and passed a sweeping clean energy omnibus bill. Senator O’Connor offered an amendment to the bill which would ban the construction of compressor stations within a half-mile of residential homes, playgrounds, churches, day cares, schools, protected waterways, areas of critical environmental concern, and environmental justice neighborhoods. The amendment was adopted and passed by the Senate. 
  • In 2020, Senator O’Connor and the Fore River Basin delegation were successful in having an air monitoring station installed in the vicinity of the project site. This will help collect baseline levels of pollutants in the air to support the fact that this region cannot sustain any additional emissions, especially the emissions of a compressor station.

Investing in Sustainability

  • $6.8 Million through the Dam and Seawall Repair and Removal Program for Scituate, Marshfield, Weymouth, and Duxbury to design, reinforce, and build new coastal resilience infrastructure.
  • $1.1 Million for Cohasset, Duxbury, Marshfield, Norwell, and Weymouth to fund energy conservation measures in municipal facilities like schools, public safety buildings, libraries, and DPW facilities.
  • $225,000 for Scituate, Cohasset, and Duxbury for climate change flood vulnerability assessments and adaptation planning
  • $111,600 for the entire district to help maximize recycling, composting and waste reduction programs.
  • $37,500 for Cohasset to install six new electric vehicle charging stations throughout town.

Sponsored Legislation

  • An Act to create a deposit for glass wine and liquor bottles (endorsed by the Sierra Club)
  • An Act providing solar energy to state agencies (endorsed by Environment Massachusetts)
  • An Act relative to community preservation funds for seawall repairs
  • An Act relative to compressor stations
  • An Act protecting air quality from carbon-emitting energy generators
  • An Act relative to hydrokinetic energy
  • An Act relative to air monitoring stations
  • An Act to protect open space, historical resources, and community housing from coastal threats
  • An Act reestablishing the harbors and inland waters maintenance fund
  • An Act relative to the impact of natural gas transfer facilities on public health

Co-Sponsored Legislation:

  • An Act re-powering Massachusetts with 100 percent renewable energy
  • An Act to secure a clean energy future
  • An Act relative to Energy Savings Efficiency (Energy SAVE)
  • An Act protecting ratepayers from gas pipeline expansion costs
  • An Act increasing the land conservation tax credit
  • An Act promoting clean energy storage
  • An Act to reduce gas leaks
  • An Act requiring public interest considerations in gas infrastructure expansion proceedings
  • An Act encouraging the use of renewable energy on agricultural land
  • An Act relative to enhancing reliability of renewable resources in the Commonwealth
  • An Act to modernize our natural gas infrastructure
  • An Act relative to conservation and natural gas infrastructure
  • An Act promoting sustainable investment, economic security and fiscal responsibility with respect to climate risks

State Senator Patrick O'Connor: Protecting Our Health & Environment 

As your State Senator, Patrick has continued the work that he started as a Weymouth Town Councilor and has fought the proposed Weymouth Compressor Station every step of the way.

As a member of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change (GWCC), I work hands on with legislation and organizations to strengthen our natural resiliency and preserve the environment. Thanks to the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act, we have reduced our statewide greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to the point where we are 21% below 1990 GHG levels, according to 2014 data reports. But there is always going to be more that we can do for a greener, healthier environment.

This past legislative session, I worked with my fellow members on the GWCC committee to create the Clean Energy Futures Act, which would open up the Commonwealth to more renewable energy resources and set ambitious goals and benchmarks to reduce our environmental impact. I was able to include one of my priority bills, which would ban the construction of a natural gas compressor station within a half-mile of residential spaces or areas of environmental concern. I was proud to support this omnibus legislation all the way through to Conference Committee, where my Senate colleagues and I fought to include as much language as possible.

Since 2014, our district has received approximately $28 million in State grants for dam and seawall repair. These reinforcements are necessary to allow our coastal communities to address the challenges of storms and sea level rise. We are continuing to work with the Office of Coastal Zone Management to protect ocean habitats and promote sustainable economic development on the coast.

I am in strong favor of diversifying our renewable energy portfolio, lifting the cap on clean energy production, and advancing projects that will make Massachusetts an even more responsible steward of the environment.


Senator O'Connor in Cohasset for the ribbon cutting for the town’s new solar panels. 


I am honored to have received the endorsement of the Environmental League of Massachusetts (ELM) for my re-election campaign. Since being sworn in as your State Senator two and a half years ago, we have worked incredibly hard to advocate for Massachusetts to improve our environmental policies, expand our renewable energy capabilities, and protect our natural resources.

Regarding my candidacy for re-election, ELM said, “We are grateful for your leadership on environmental issues and the work that you have done to build a more sustainable community and Commonwealth. With critical issues of energy policy and environmental protection to be considered in the next session, the leadership of the ELM Action Fund believes it is important to have leaders like you in the State Legislature.”

As South Shore residents we are constantly reminded of the impacts of global warming, climate change, and sea level rise. There is still more to do and I look forward to continuing this work as your State Senator.