HARRISBURG, PA — A state court dealt a set-back today to Pennsylvania’s climate fight, ruling against the state’s CO2 Budget Trading Program and its participation in the successful Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Governor Josh Shapiro and the state Department of Environmental Protection have 30 days to appeal the ruling.
The following is reaction from Manish Bapna, President & CEO of NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council):
“This is not the final word on Pennsylvania’s participation in RGGI or the vast benefits it confers on the people of this state. For nearly 20 years, Governor Shapiro has been a champion for clean air, climate action and a prosperous Pennsylvania. He should appeal this misguided decision at once and make the case before the state Supreme Court for a program that’s already proven itself across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
“Every day of delay is costing the people of Pennsylvania urgently needed investment in the clean energy economy of the future and equally important assistance to communities facing coal plant retirements. RGGI is a powerful tool for confronting the climate crisis in a way that creates jobs, cuts energy bills and powers the future for the people of Pennsylvania. It’s time for the governor to take that case to the state Supreme Court.”
Since its 2009 launch, RGGI has saved consumers hundreds of millions of dollars on energy, with billions more in savings to come; created thousands of new jobs; and improved public health while helping to cut carbon pollution from the region’s power plants in half. RGGI’s well-documented success shows how flexible, market-based approaches to cutting power plant pollution benefit everyone. The program is a model for other states and regions hoping to reap economic, health, and social benefits in the transition to clean energy that we need to solve the climate crisis. Because the RGGI states have agreed to continue cutting carbon pollution through at least 2030, the program’s many benefits will continue for years to come.
NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Established in 1970, NRDC uses science, policy, law, and people power to confront the climate crisis, protect public health, and safeguard nature. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, Beijing and Delhi (an office of NRDC India Pvt. Ltd). Visit us at www.nrdc.org and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.