Measures of Growth Indicator in Action: Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Did you know that Maine was the first state to enact a statutory target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions? We did so in 2003 and exceeded the original target ahead of schedule in 2012 when emissions fell to 10% below 1990 levels. In 2019, further legislation set the goal of reducing emissions 45% below 1990 levels by 2030 and 80% by 2050. We continue to make steady progress toward these goals.

As Maine and the entire nation honor Earth Day, and in hopes that Mainers will continue to work toward addressing the climate crisis and its impact on Maine’s economy every day of every month, we are highlighting Greenhouse Gas Emissions as the current Indicator in Action by highlighting the story of Nyle Systems, one of many, many Maine businesses who are becoming “green economy” leaders in creating new jobs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.  

In March 2023, Brewer-based Nyle Systems announced the creation of a second factory, this one in Bangor, to manufacture energy-efficient heat pumps, creating about 200 jobs over time. With this news, Nyle joined the growing list of Maine companies leading the nation’s transition to clean energy while creating opportunities for Maine people.  

Nyle Systems’ roots go back to the 1970s when it built dehumidification systems for drying lumber. It still sells these, but today it also manufactures food drying systems and heat-pump water heaters for customers nationwide. The heat pumps replace gas boilers and reduce demand for fossil fuels when electrified from a renewable source. They are also cheaper to operate and can save consumers thousands of dollars every year.  

CEO Ton Mathissen explained to WABI TV5 the impact of rising demand for clean, energy-efficient solutions and the company’s growth: “That is really what is driving this.” Both Maine and the federal government offer incentives for households to install heat pumps.  

Nyle System’s new factory will significantly increase the company’s workforce, which was about 120 people prior to the expansion. The company has doubled in size every three to four years since 2010 and intends to keep going.  

The Need for Continued Diligence 

Greenhouse gas emissions is just one of the indicators the Maine Economic Growth Council, the nonpartisan, independent group that oversees the Measures of Growth Report, uses to track Maine’s environmental health, how it intersects with Maine’s economy, and why the Council recommends continued diligence on these fronts. 

We hope you will dig into the data behind these Indicators and how they intersect with other critical elements of Maine’s economy. Visit the Measures of Growth section of our website where you can see all 31 indicators we featured in 2023, as well as past issues of the report dating back to 2010.