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Monday, July 8, 2013

Good news/good news on reducing emissions and growing an economy

Part 2:  We love this wonderful economic report/benefits around the reduction in emissions:

RGGI is good for the Northeast’s economic future.
  • Global warming threatens public welfare and the Northeast’s economy. More than $2 trillion of private property and public infrastructure could be exposed to damage in the Baltimore, Boston, New York-Newark, Philadelphia and Providence areas in the event of a 0.65 meter (2.1 foot) increase in sea level by 2050.
  • RGGI helps reduce the region’s dependence on fossil fuels. The Northeast spent nearly $130 billion in 2010 on fossil fuels, 98.5 percent of which were imported from outside the region. RGGI helps drive investments in energy efficiency measures and homegrown renewable energy sources that keep money and jobs in the Northeast.
  • Reducing global warming pollution goes hand in hand with growing the economy. Between 2000 and 2010, the economies of the RGGI states grew twice as fast per capita as non-RGGI states while cutting carbon dioxide pollution 25 percent faster per capita. (See Figure ES-2.)
Figure ES-2. The Northeast Is Cutting Pollution and Growing its Economy Faster than the Rest of the Nation, 2000 to 2010
  • RGGI has produced a $1.6 billion economic boost (net present value) to the region through 2011, according to a study by Analysis Group. Strengthening RGGI would produce an additional $8 billion in economic benefits, along with 124,800 additional job-years of employment, according to a recent analysis by Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management.
To protect the Northeast against the worst impacts of global warming and to continue to move the region toward a clean energy economy, Northeastern states should do the following:
  • Adopt the emission reductions proposed by the RGGI states in February 2013, limiting emissions to no greater than 91 million tons per year starting in 2014, with additional 2.5 percent annual emission reductions between 2015 and 2020. This would ensure significant emission reductions from current levels.
  • Convince New Jersey to re-join the program, which would help the state lessen the dangers posed by increasingly severe storms and rising sea level while bolstering the state’s economy.
  • Establish limits on global warming pollution that go beyond the electricity sector, including for transportation and heating fuels. This could include expanding RGGI to other sectors.
  • Implement the laws providing for economy-wide limits on global warming pollution in Maryland, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
  • Lay the groundwork for expanding RGGI to other states.
  • Encourage the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to move forward with regulating global warming pollution from existing power plants in all states.

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