NY, RGGI States Move on Power Plant Pollution Cuts

For Immediate Release: August 23, 2017

NY, RGGI States Move on Power Plant Pollution Cuts

9-State Agreement Builds on Cuomo Climate Agenda with 132M Ton Carbon Cut

Albany, NY – Today, the nine states which comprise the groundbreaking Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) announced plans to strengthen the program by dramatically cutting power plant carbon reductions through 2030. The agreement, championed by Governor Andrew Cuomo, comes in the wake of President Donald Trump’s attacks on our climate, clean air, and clean energy initiatives.

The following statement is attributable to Conor Bambrick, air & energy director at Environmental Advocates of New York:

“When people talk about the need for states to rise and lead on climate action, given all the roll backs and hurdles coming out of D.C., this is what they’re talking about.

New York and RGGI states are demonstrating that climate leadership is not simply maintaining the status quo – it can’t be when the U.S. is pulling out of the Paris Agreement, and the Environmental Protection Agency is being dismantled from within. Climate leadership is about taking it to the next level, driving even deeper cuts into dangerous pollution, and setting a standard for the rest of the nation to follow.

As the program moves forward, we are looking to Governor Cuomo to continue this leadership by making sure that carbon cuts are occurring economy-wide, not just within the power sector, as well as that New York spend its RGGI funds on clean energy and in communities on the front lines of climate change.”

About RGGI and Today’s Agreement:

  • The states participating in RGGI include: New York, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, and Delaware.
  • The agreement will cut power plant carbon pollution at least another 30-percent by 2030, equaling an estimated 132 million additional tons of carbon pollution kept out of the atmosphere.
  • The “cap” on carbon pollution across the coalition will continue to be reduced annually, a new component will be added to allow states to withhold and retire allowances at a faster rate, and existing allowances currently being stockpiled by polluters will be retired..
  • The agreement now goes to participating states to enact the reforms.
  • Two outstanding issues to be announced include how the clean energy funds raised will be dedicated to environmental justice communities and how the State will demonstrate pollution reductions are occurring in impacted communities.