While politicians in Washington debate man-made effects on global warming, Connecticut has already taken action and is making progress toward meeting statewide emissions standards set by the Global Warming Solutions Act.
The Constitution State continues to take pride in its response to what it calls the "increasingly urgent challenges posed by global climate change," according to a June 6 release
from the office of Gov. Dan Malloy.
The state adopted a Climate Change Action Plan in 2005.
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Connecticut is one of nine states to take part in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative
, a cooperative effort aimed to cap and reduce power sector CO2 emissions. As a group, the RGGI intends to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The organization put forth a 2014 RGGI CO2 cap of 91 million short tons, then pledges to reduce by 2.5 percent each year from 2015-20, according to the RGGI website.
- The other eight states in the RGGI program are:
- New Hampshire
- New York
- Rhode Island
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- Emission allowances are sold by individual states via auction and the proceeds are reinvested in renewable energy and other beneficial programs, which leads to clean energy innovations and the creation of green jobs in RGGI states, according to RGGI.org.
In June, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection issued Taking Action on Climate Change: 2014 Progress Report
, and praised the leadership for the progress made toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 10 percent below 1990 levels by 2020, and 80 percent below 2001 levels by 2050, through measures of the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act.
The declines through 2010 came from reductions in CO2 emissions and other climate hazards from power plants, car tailpipes, and waste-to-energy facilities. By 2010, the state was more than halfway toward its 2020 requirement. The biggest chunk came from electric power, with emissions tumbling 31 percent since 1990, according to the June report.
"Connecticut's early success in fighting climate change demonstrates our commitment to protecting the environment, preserving a viable future for our children, and doing so in a manner that improves air quality, bolsters the economy, creates jobs, and saves money for families and businesses," DEEP Commissioner Robert Klee said in a statement. "Based on the success we have achieved, it is clear that there is no conflict between the environment and the economy when it comes to reducing carbon emissions."
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