U.S. States & Regions

States and regions across the country are adopting climate policies, including the development of regional greenhouse gas reduction markets, the creation of state and local climate action and adaptation plans, and increasing renewable energy generation. Read More
 

Coal Initiative Series: State Policy Options for Low-Carbon Coal Policy

 

State Policy Options

Coal Initiative Series White Paper:

State Options for Low-Carbon Coal Policy

Dowload the full white paper (pdf)

Prepared for the Pew Center on Global Climate Change
February 2008

By:
Richard Cowart and Shanna Vale, Regulatory Assistance Project
Joshua Bushinsky and Pat Hogan, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

State Options for Low-Carbon Coal Policy is the third in a series of Pew Center papers that explore strategies for addressing CO2 emissions from using coal to provide electricity.

This paper provides an overview of the policy options available to states to encourage the deployment of carbon capture and sequestration technologies for coal-fueled power plants, including those policy tools available to state public utility commissions.

Joshua Bushinsky
Pat Hogan
Richard Cowart
Shanna Vale
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A Look at Emissions Targets

United States:

State & Regional
Proposed Federal Legislation
Bush Administration

International

Business

United States - State & Regional

Entity

Target

Notes and Source

Arizona: State-wide2000 levels by 2020
50% below 2000 by 2040
Executive Order 2006-13
California: State-wide

2000 levels by 2010
1990 levels by 2020
80% below 1990 by 2050

Executive Order S-3-05
California: Major industries state-wide1990 levels by 2020AB 32
Connecticut: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-85% below 2001 levels in the long term
Connecticut Climate Change Action Plan
Florida: State-wide

2000 levels by 2017
1990 levels by 2025
80% below 1990 levels by 2050

EO 07-127
Florida: Electric Utilities

2000 levels by 2017
1990 levels by 2025
80% below 1990 levels by 2050

EO 07-127
Hawaii: State-wide1990 levels by 2020Act 234
Illinois: State-wide1990 levels by 2020
60% below 1990 levels by 2050
Press Release
Maine: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-80% below 2003 long-term
LD 845 (HP 622)
Massachusetts: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-85% below 1990 long-term
Massachusetts Climate Protection Plan of 2004
Massachusetts: Electric Utilities10% below 1997-1999CO2 target only.
310 CMR 7.29
Minnesota: State-wide

15% below 2005 levels by 2015
30% below 2005 levels by 2025
80% below 2005 levels by 2050

Next Generation Energy Act
New Hampshire: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-85% below 2001 long-term
The Climate Change Challenge
New Hampshire: Electric Utilities1990 levels by 2006CO2 target only.
HB 284
New Jersey: State-wide1990 levels by 2020
80% below 2006 levels by 2050
Press release and executive order
New Mexico: State-wide2000 levels by 2012
10% below 2000 by 2020
75% below 2000 by 2050
Executive Order 05-033
New York: State-wide5% below 1990 by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
State Energy Plan of 2002
Oregon: State-wideStabilize by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75% below 1990 by 2050
Oregon Strategy for Greenhouse Gas Reductions
Rhode Island: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
Rhode Island Greenhouse Gas Action Plan
Vermont: State-wide1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-85% below 2001 long-term
 
Washington: State-wide1990 levels by 2020
25% below 1990 levels by 2035
50% below 1990 levels by 2050
Executive Order 07-02

Western Climate Initiative

15% below 2005 levels by 2020Western Climate Initiative Statement of Regional Goal
Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative: CO2 emissions from power plants

Cap emissions at current levels in 2009
Reduce emissions 10% by 2019.

our summary
New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers:
Regional economy-wide
1990 levels by 2010
10% below 1990 by 2020
75-85% below 2001 long-term
Climate Change Action Plan of 2001

United States - Proposed Federal Legislation

Entity

Target

Notes & Source

Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act
S.3036

4% below 2005 level by 2012
19% below 2005 level by 2020
71% below 2005 level by 2050 
As introduced 5/2008

Low Carbon Economy Act (Bingaman-Specter)

S.1766

2012 level in 2012
2006 level in 2020
1990 level in 2030
President may set long-term target greater than or equal to 60% below 2006 level by 2050 contingent upon international effort

As introduced 7/2007
Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act (McCain-Lieberman)

S.280
2004 level in 2012
1990 level in 2020
20% below 1990 level in 2030
60% below 1990 level in 2050
As introduced 1/2007
Global Warming Pollution Reduction Act (Sanders-Boxer)

S.309
2010 level in 2010
2%/year reduction from 2010-2020
1990 level in 2020
27% below 1990 level in 2030
53% below 1990 level in 2040
80% below 1990 level in 2050
As introduced 1/2007
Climate Stewardship Act (Olver-Gilchrest)

H.R.620
2006 level in 2012
1990 level in 2020
22% below 1990 level in 2030
70% below 1990 level in 2050
As introduced 1/2007
Global Warming Reduction Act (Kerry-Snowe)

S.485
2010 level in 2010
1990 level in 2020
2.5%/year reduction from 2020-2029
3.5%/year reduction from 2030-2050
62% below 1990 level in 2050
As introduced 2/2007
Safe Climate Act of 2007 (Waxman)

H.R.1590
2009 level in 2010
2%/year reduction from 2011-2020
1990 levels in 2020
5%/year reduction from 2020-2029
5%/year reduction from 2030-2050
80% below 1990 levels in 2050
As introduced 3/2007
Electric Utility Cap and Trade Act (Feinstein-Carper)

S.317
2006 level in 2011
2001 level in 2015
1%/year reduction from 2016-2019
1.5%/year reduction starting in 2020 (may be adjusted by Administrator)

Electricity sector; all GHGs

As introduced 1/2007

Clean Air Climate Change Act of 2007 (Alexander-Lieberman)

S.1168
2300 MMT CO2 (approx. 2006 level) from 2011-2014
2100 MMT CO2 (approx. 1997 level) from 2015-2019
1800 MMT CO2 (approx.1990 level) from 2020-2024
1500 MMT CO2 (approx.17% below 1990 level) from 2025 forward
Electricity sector; 4 pollutants

As introduced 4/2007
Clean Air Planning Act of 2007 (Carper)

S. 1177
2006 CO2 level in 2012-2014
2001 CO2 level in 2015
1%/year reduction CO2 level from 2016-2019
1.5%/year reduction CO2 levels starting in 2020
1.5%/year reduction CO2 levels starting in 2020 (may be adjusted by Administrator to 3% in 2030 & beyond)
25% below 1990 CO2 level in 2050
Electricity sector; 4 pollutants

As introduced 4/2007
Clean Power Act of 2007 (Sanders)

S. 1201

Goal is to facilitate the worldwide stabilization of atmospheric concentrations of global warming pollutants at 450ppm CO2e by 2050*

2300 MMT CO2 (approx. 2006 level) by 2011
2100 MMT CO2 (approx. 1997 level) by 2015*
1803 MMT CO2 (approx. 1990 level) by 2020*
1500 MMT CO2 (approx. 17% below 1990 level) by 2025*

* If Congress has not passed, and the President has not signed, legislation to address 85% of GHG emissions economy-wide by 2012, further 3%/year reduction in CO2 limits until global GHG emissions reach 450ppm.

Electricity sector; 4 pollutants

As introduced 4/2007

United States - Bush Administration

Entity

Target

Notes & Source

Voluntary "greenhouse gas intensity" target for the U.S.18% below 2002 intensity levels by 2012Announced 2/14/2002
Our Analysis

International

Entity

Target

Notes & Source

Australia

8% above 1990 by 2008-2012

Kyoto Target

Canada

6% below 1990 by 2008-2012

Kyoto Target

European Community

8% below 1990 by 2008-2012

Kyoto Target

Japan

6% below 1990 by 2008-2012

Kyoto Target

New Zealand

1990 levels by 2008-2012

Kyoto Target

United Kingdom

20% below 1990 by 2020
60% below 1990 by 2050

CO2 target only.
Energy White Paper of 2003

European Community
Kyoto Bubble Targets
[i]

Target for 2008-2012

European Community Council Decision of April 2002

Austria

13% below 1990

 

Belgium

7.5% below 1990

 

Denmark

21% below 1990

 

Finland

1990 levels

 

France

1990 levels

 

Germany

21% below 1990

 

Greece

25% above 1990

 

Ireland

13% above 1990

 

Italy

6.5% below 1990

 

Luxembourg

28% below 1990

 

Netherlands

6% below 1990

 

Portugal

27% above 1990

 

Spain

15% above 1990

 

Sweden

4% above 1990

 

United Kingdom

12.5% below 1990

 

[i] The EU-15 nations have joined a "bubble" which allows the joint fulfillment of emissions commitments and preserves the collective emissions reduction goal of 8% below 1990 levels by 2008/2012

Business

Our Business Environmental Leadership Council (BELC) is a group of leading companies worldwide that are responding to the challenges posed by climate change. This section provides a sampling of GHG reduction targets set by these companies. Through their efforts, they are demonstrating that GHG emissions can be reduced significantly and cost-effectively.

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EPA Denies California Vehicle Emissions Standards Waiver Request

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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On December 19, 2007, United States Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Stephen Johnson announced his agency had denied California’s request for a waiver that would allow the state to implement its greenhouse gas emissions standards for motor vehicles. In explaining his decision, Johnson argued that recently enacted federal energy legislation establishes national vehicle efficiency standards of 35 miles per gallon by 2020, and that this unified standard is preferable to a state-by-state approach. Johnson also said that in making its request, California failed to demonstrate the waiver was required to meet “compelling and extraordinary conditions” within the state, given the global nature of greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Governor Schwarzenegger of California responded to the EPA’s decision by saying California’s standards are still necessary because the new federal requirements do not go far enough in addressing greenhouse gas emissions. On January 2, 2008, California filed a lawsuit challenging the EPA's decision.

California’s proposed standards would be gradually phased in between model-years 2009 and 2016, and by model-year 2016, would require reductions of tailpipe greenhouse gas emissions from new motor vehicles of approximately 30 percent. California and 16 other states are poised to adopt the standards. However, before these states can act, the federal EPA must grant California’s waiver request.

Johnson’s decision comes in the wake of two court rulings that supported implementation of the standards. On December 12, 2007, U.S. District Court Judge Anthony Ishii ruled against a group of automobile manufacturers challenging California’s authority to set and implement greenhouse gas emissions standards for motor vehicles. A similar ruling was issued earlier in the year in Vermont against automobile industry plaintiffs challenging that state’s authority to adopt the California standards.

EPA Press Release
California Governor's Office Press Release
Map of States with Greenhouse Gas Vehicle Standards

The Role of Coal Gasification in Ohio’s Economy and Energy Future

Creating Power, Technology and Products

Creating Power, Technology, and Products: The Role of Coal Gasification in Ohio’s Economy and Energy Future

Prepared for the Pew Center on Global Climate Change by Kleinhenz & Associates of Cleveland, Ohio
December 2007

Download a pdf of this report.

Read the companion study "The Role of CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery in Ohio's Economy and Energy Future"

Executive Summary

The Pew Center on Global Climate Change commissioned Kleinhenz and Associates to examine how coal gasification (CG) combined with Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) technology could play a role in Ohio’s economy and energy future – particularly in Northeast Ohio, a major center of manufacturing in the U.S. This working paper focuses primarily on opportunities for gasification projects to augment Ohio’s economy. It examines economic activity factors related to coal gasification and how the location of a number of key support industries in Ohio could provide the state with a competitive advantage in this area. The study focuses on a polygeneration facility that would supply electricity and some other products as an example of the type of gasification facility that could, if a sufficient number of similar facilities were located in the area, serve as the stimulus for a new or expanded industry cluster.

The potential economic impact of locating a polygeneration gasifier in Northeast Ohio is large. A significant portion of the inputs required for one $1.1+ billion facility can be supplied either within northeastern Ohio or from elsewhere in the state. Operation of the facility is estimated to increase annual statewide personal income by $39 million and Ohio output by $161 million. The Northeast Ohio region will account for 98 percent of the operational benefits.

The report suggests several possible steps to convert this research to an action plan to build support for, and interest in, a coal-gasification industry cluster in Northeast Ohio. Outreach should focus on engaging industry leaders, foundations, and state and regional economic development leaders.

Report on how coal gasification (CG) combined with Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) technology could play a role in Ohio’s economy.
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Federal Court Upholds California's Vehicle Emissions Standards

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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On December 12, 2007, U.S. District Court Judge Anthony Ishii ruled against a group of automobile manufacturers challenging California’s authority to set and implement greenhouse gas emissions standards for motor vehicles. The auto industry had argued that the state's proposed regulations amount to setting fuel efficiency requirements for new vehicles, and that such efficiency standards can be set only by the federal government - specifically, the Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act. A similar ruling was issued earlier this year in Vermont against automobile industry plaintiffs challenging that state’s authority to adopt California’s vehicle emissions standards. California’s proposed standards would be gradually phased in between model-years 2009 and 2016, and by model-year 2016, would require reductions of tailpipe greenhouse gas emissions from new motor vehicles of approximately 30 percent. California and 16 other states are poised to adopt the standards, assuming the federal EPA grants California’s waiver request and barring any additional legal challenges.

Press Release
Map of States with Greenhouse Gas Vehicle Standards

Montana Joins Western Climate Initiative, Establishes 20x10 Initiative

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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On November 19, 2007, Governor Brian Schweitzer announced that Montana will become the seventh U.S. state to join the Western Climate Initiative (WCI), a joint effort to reduce regional greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change. The Initiative was established in February 2007 by the governors of Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington; Utah and the Canadian Provinces of British Columbia and Manitoba joined the initiative in the spring of 2007. Under the agreement, by 2008 the member states and provinces will establish a cap-and-trade system to aid in meeting their regional greenhouse gas emissions target of 15% below 2005 levels by 2020. The participants will also set up an emissions registry and tracking system.

At the same time, Governor Schweitzer also announced a new initiative seeking a 20% reduction in energy consumption by Montana state agencies by the year 2010. In addition to reducing energy use, Schweitzer also asked agencies to apply a Montana vehicle efficiency standard by shifting state vehicle fleets to achieve an average of 30 miles per gallon or better.

Press Release
Western Climate Initiative
Map of Regional Initiatives

Midwestern Governors Announce Emissions Reduction Agreement

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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On November 15, 2007, six states and one Canadian Province established the Midwestern Regional Greenhouse Gas Reduction Accord. Under the Accord, members agree to establish regional greenhouse gas reduction targets, including a long-term target of 60 to 80 percent below current emissions levels, and develop a multi-sector cap-and-trade system to help meet the targets. Participants will also establish a greenhouse gas emissions reductions tracking system and implement other policies, such as low-carbon fuel standards, to aid in reducing emissions. The Governors of Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, as well as the Premier of the Canadian Province of Manitoba, signed the Accord as full participants; the Governors of Indiana, Ohio, and South Dakota joined the agreement as observers to participate in the development of the cap and trade system. The Accord represents the first Midwestern regional agreement among U.S. states to collectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and will be fully implemented within 30 months.

The agreement was announced at the end of the two-day MGA Energy Security and Climate Change Summit in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during which representatives from the Midwestern states – including the nine states mentioned above, as well as Nebraska and North Dakota – discussed the various low-carbon energy options available in their region. In addition to the Midwest Greenhouse Gas Reduction Accord signed by six states and Manitoba, eight members of the MGA signed the Energy Security and Climate Stewardship Platform. The Platform lists goals for energy efficiency improvements, low-carbon transportation fuel availability, renewable electricity production, and carbon capture and storage development. Member states also signed six additional resolutions. These measures establish a Carbon Management Infrastructure Partnership, a Midwestern Biobased Product Procurement System, coordination across the region for biofuels development, and a working group to pursue a collaborative, multi-jurisdictional transmission initiative.

Press Release

Map of Regional Initiatives

Statement: Midwestern Governors Announce Emissions Reduction Agreement

Statement by Eileen Claussen, President, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

November 15, 2007

The announcement today by the Midwestern Governors is an important development - both environmentally and politically. This agreement fills a geographic gap in regional climate action, sending a clear message that the U.S. states are increasingly united behind efforts to reduce our emissions. The Midwest emits relatively high levels of greenhouse gases and is especially dependent on two economic sectors that are absolutely critical to addressing climate change -- coal and agriculture. Constructive Midwest engagement dramatically increases the likelihood of developing a sensible national policy.

This agreement fills a geographic gap in regional climate action.

California Sues United States Environmental Protection Agency Over Vehicle Standards Waiver Request

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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On November 8, 2007, the state of California sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its failure to act on the state’s vehicle emissions standards waiver request. In its lawsuit, California argues that the agency should be compelled to issue a decision on the request, which was originally made by the California Air Resources Board in December 2005. California has special authority under the Federal Clean Air Act to set its own vehicle emissions standards that go beyond federal standards, though it must first obtain a waiver from the U.S. EPA. Other states can then choose to follow either California’s regulations or the EPA’s. California’s proposed greenhouse gas emissions standards for motor vehicles would be gradually phased in starting in 2009, and by 2016 would require reductions of tailpipe greenhouse gas emissions from new motor vehicles of approximately 30 percent. The fourteen other states poised to adopt the California standards will join as interveners in the lawsuit. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger warned the federal government six months earlier that the state would file the suit if the U.S. EPA continued to delay action on the waiver request. The EPA has repeatedly stated that it will reach a decision by the end of 2007.

Press Release
Map of States with Greenhouse Gas Vehicle Standards

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