Massachusetts: Governor Healey Touts New Climatetech Initiative at Westborough Clean Energy Company

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Westborough — Today, Governor Maura T. Healey continued her Mass Leads Road Show with a stop at Ascend Elements in Westborough to promote the key climatetech investments included in the bill. Ascend is a clean energy company committed to creating the future of sustainable, Electric Vehicle battery manufacturing and recycling.

This visit is part of the Governor's Mass Leads Act Road Show during which she is traveling to communities across Massachusetts to highlight the ways in which her recently proposed economic development bill will grow the state's economy, support businesses and attract talent. The bill proposes a new 10-year, $1 billion strategy to make Massachusetts the climate innovation lab for the world, and includes a framework for capital, tax incentives, and operations.

"Ascend Elements is a great Massachusetts story – their research was developed at WPI, they started and scaled here in Massachusetts, they're creating good jobs for Massachusetts residents, and they're producing technology that the world desperately needs," said Governor Healey. "Our administration wants even more stories like this, and we want to continue to help our existing climatetech companies like Ascend grow and thrive here in Massachusetts. That's why we're proposing a first-of-its-kind investment in climatetech in our Mass Leads Act."

"Ascend's technology is supporting the electric vehicle market, helping us reduce emissions and cleaning up the battery manufacturing process. This is the level of innovation the world needs to beat climate change, and we have it right here in Massachusetts," said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. "With the Mass Leads Act, we can replicate this success and make Massachusetts the climate innovation lab for the world."

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Ascend uses a patented process to transform used lithium-ion batteries and manufacturing scrap into new, engineered battery materials for electric vehicles. The technology was invented at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The company is headquartered in Westborough and recently worked with the Healey-Driscoll administration to secure a site for a new, larger facility in Devens. The company was recently named one of Time Magazine's top 100 greentech companies of 2024.

"We are honored to have Governor Healey and her team with us today. While Ascend Elements has operations in other parts of the country and in Europe, our home is in Massachusetts. Our foundational technology was developed at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and some of our earliest funding came from MassCEC," said CEO Mike O'Kronley of Ascend Elements. "Innovation and technology are essential in addressing climate change, and with its amazing talent pool, world-class higher education system and visionary leadership, Massachusetts is on its way to becoming a global leader in climate tech."

Governor Healey is proposing a $1 billion, 10-year climatetech initiative to make Massachusetts the climate innovation lab for the world. The initiative would create jobs, support technology development and infrastructure to reduce emissions, and promote resilience locally. Massachusetts would be well positioned as a global leader in climatetech. The funds and programs would help companies start and scale in Massachusetts, creating well paying jobs across the state. The initiative has three core parts:
  1. Capital Funding: The bill would provide significant capital resources to MassCEC for the first time. Bond authorizations can support research and development, innovation, manufacturing, commercialization, and the deployment of climatetech technologies, including offshore wind, across Massachusetts.

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  1. Tax Incentives: The bill would authorize funding for tax incentives, which will help ensure the state is competitive in attracting and retaining these businesses. The initiative proposes to establish a new Climatetech Tax Incentive Program to enable the state to invest in climatetech companies, expand employment opportunities and support research and development. The bill also seeks to continue implementation of the newly created Offshore Wind Tax Credit and proposes some strategic changes to further grow the program.

  1. Operating Funding: This 10-year strategy underscores the critical importance of annual operating support through the state budget process for MassCEC, which is instrumental in fostering the climatetech industry and training a clean energy workforce. Operating funds will enable MassCEC to deploy stable programming and initiatives to reach areas that capital programs and tax incentives aren't able to reach. This includes workforce development initiatives, internships, strategic partnerships, and operations.


"Ascend Elements is a vital partner for Team Massachusetts, and we are proud to have supported this innovative company through MassVentures and MassCEC," said Secretary of Economic Development Yvonne Hao. "Their pioneering work in sustainability is driving us towards a greener economy. We're committed to supporting them and all climatetech companies in Massachusetts through our Mass Leads Act."

"Companies like Ascend are manufacturing the solutions to climate change right here in Massachusetts," said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rebecca Tepper. "As more people adopt electric vehicles, we will need a process to recycle their materials. That's where Ascend comes in. We can and must replicate Ascend's success with the Mass Leads Act."

For more information about the Mass Leads Act, visit the Economic Development Bill website.

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