Newsletters

  • In This Issue:"The Day After Tomorrow": Could It Really Happen? Global Climate Change and Coal's Future The 10-50 Solution: A Decade-by-Decade Approach to a Low Carbon Future Possible Impacts of Global Climate Change on the U.S.: Two New Reports New Climate Change Programs in the States Climate Change Activities in The U.S.: 2004 Update Upcoming Reports "THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW": COULD IT REALLY HAPPEN?"The Day After Tomorrow," a new movie being released this Friday, May 28, is loosely based on the theory of "abrupt climate change." As a result of global warming, the Gulf Stream (part of the Atlantic thermohaline circulation) shuts down. The North Atlantic region starts to cool while heat builds up in the tropics. The result is a severe storm, the likes of which have never been seen, and a dramatic change in the global climate. Could it really happen? GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE AND COAL'S FUTUREEileen Claussen recently spoke at the American Coal Council's Spring Forum in Dallas, Texas. Her message was simple: Coal's place in the U.S. and global energy mix in the decades to come will depend largely on the industry's ability to develop the technologies that will allow us to achieve dramatic reductions in carbon emissions from coal generation. Read the speech. THE 10-50 SOLUTION: A DECADE-BY-DECADE APPROACHRoughly 100 government, business and environmental community leaders and climate-change experts participated in a Pew Center workshop to develop a long-term vision for a low-carbon economy within 50 years. Discussions covered the technologies, industrial processes and government policies needed in the short and medium term to achieve it.Eileen Claussen recently spoke about the workshop at the 2004 EnvironDesign8 Conference in Minneapolis (May 18, 2004) IMPACTS OF GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE U.S.: NEW REPORTSA new Pew Center report, "A Synthesis of Potential Climate Change Impacts on the United States," details the possible effects of global climate change on health, natural resources and various economic sectors of the United States.A new Pew Center report, "U.S. Market Consequences of Global Climate Change," gives an in-depth analysis of the potential effects of climate change on the U.S. economy. NEW CLIMATE CHANGE PROGRAMS IN THE STATESIn the absence of action at the federal level, many states are taking the lead in curbing GHG emissions. For example:Massachusetts Governor Romney released the state's new Climate Protection Plan, which identifies several near-term actions the state will take to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. (May 2004) The Connecticut legislature passed a bill establishing a state goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2010, to 10 percent below 1990 levels by 2020, and eventually to a level 75 to 80 percent below current levels. (May 2004) Washington Governor Locke signed into law a bill requiring new fossil fueled power plants in the state to offset 20 percent of their CO2 emissions (with outside projects that reduce emissions). (March 2004) The New Mexico legislature passed a bill requiring the state's utilities to generate at least 5 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2006. (March 2004)To learn more about these and other steps taken at the state level. CLIMATE CHANGE ACTIVITIES IN THE U.S.: 2004 UPDATEAn updated report, "Climate Change Activities in the U.S., 2004 Update," details recent steps taken to address climate change in Congress, the states and in the business community. UPCOMING REPORTS"Coping with Climate Change: The Role of Adaptation in the United States"Expected Release: June 2004
  • In This Issue:Greenhouse Gas Cap-and-Trade Bill Introduced in Congress Reducing Greenhouse Gases: Balancing Policy and Politics Coral Reef Ecosystems at Risk: New Report Available Innovative Technology Policies to Address Climate Change New Climate Change Programs at the State Level Upcoming Reports GREENHOUSE GAS CAP-AND-TRADE BILL INTRODUCED IN CONGRESSThe Climate Stewardship Act, introduced on March 30 by U.S. Representatives Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) and John W. Olver (D-MA), is the House companion of the bill introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Joseph I. Lieberman (D-CT) and John McCain (R-AZ) in 2003. Starting in 2010, the bill would cap greenhouse gas emissions of the electricity generation, transportation, industrial, and commercial economic sectors at the 2000 level, while providing for market-based trading of emission allowances. REDUCING GREENHOUSE GASES: BALANCING POLICY AND POLITICSA diverse group of business, government, and environmental leaders, brought together by the Aspen Institute and the Pew Center, has recommended a framework for a possible mandatory greenhouse gas reduction program for the United States. Starting with the premise that, if mandatory action is taken, climate policies should be environmentally effective, economical and fair, the participants reached consensus on a policy framework that is both effective and politically feasible. Read "A Climate Policy Framework: Balancing Policy and Politics." CORAL REEF ECOSYSTEMS AT RISKCoral reefs provide important resources and direct economic benefits to the large and growing human populations in low-latitude coastal zones. But development, over-fishing, and pollution have contributed to a global loss approaching 25% of these valuable ecosystems. This new report, "The Potential Contributions of Climate Change to Coral Reef Ecosystems," analyzes the current state of knowledge regarding coral reef communities and outlines the likely impacts of climate change to coral reef systems both in U.S. waters and around the world over the next century. INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY POLICIES TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGEWidespread adoption of new technologies for electric power generation, transportation, industry, and consumer products is necessary to reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that contribute to climate change. This new brief, "U.S. Technology and Innovation Policies to Address Climate Change," summarizes the role of technology in GHG mitigation strategies and the lessons learned from U.S. technology and innovation policies. NEW CLIMATE CHANGE PROGRAMS AT THE STATE LEVELIn the absence of action at the federal level, many states are taking the lead in curbing GHG emissions. For example:Maryland passed a law requiring stricter energy efficiency standards for nine residential and commercial appliances. Public benefit funds in 12 states announced the new Clean Energy States Alliance, to promote renewable and clean energy markets in the United States. California State Treasurer announced the Green Wave Environmental Investment Initiative, and called on the state's two largest pension funds to invest in cutting-edge clean technologies and environmentally responsible companies.Learn more about steps being taken at the state level. UPCOMING REPORTS"A Synthesis of Potential Climate Change Impacts on the United States"Release: April 28, 2004"U.S. Market Consequences of Global Climate Change"Release: April 28, 2004
  • In This Issue:COP 9 Summary Now Available (conference synopsis) Advancing the International Climate Effort Beyond the Kyoto Protocol (new report) Whirlpool Announces Greenhouse Gas Reduction Target  U.S. Technology Policy and Lessons for Climate Change (new report)Conference of the Parties (COP 9) Summary Now AvailableA synopsis of decisions and political developments at the UN climate negotiations in Milan, Italy.Advancing the International Climate Effort Beyond the Kyoto Protocol (new report)With or Without Kyoto: How do we tackle climate change in a way that's fair, effective, and affordable? A new Pew Center report "Advancing the International Climate Effort Beyond the Kyoto Protocol" explores the core challenges in building an effective international response to global climate change.Whirlpool Corporation Announces GHG Emission Reduction TargetWhirlpool Corporation announced that it will decrease absolute total greenhouse gas emissions from global manufacturing, product use and end-of-life by 3% by 2008 based on a 1998 baseline. View press release and additional information on Whirlpool.U.S. Technology Policy and Lessons for Climate Change (new report)Government policies will be critical to the development and adoption of new technologies needed to abate global warming, according to a report released by the Pew Center on Global Climate Change. The report, "U.S. Technology and Innovation Policies: Lessons for Climate Change," examines U.S. experience with technology and innovation policies--both successes and failures--and draws lessons for climate change policy.
  • The LIEBERMAN-MCCAIN CLIMATE STEWARDSHIP ACT (S.139)For analysis of the Lieberman-McCain Climate Stewardship Act, including a summary of the bill and assessments of relevant cost estimates, please visit the below links:Summary of The Lieberman-McCain Climate Stewardship ActFact Sheet on MIT Cost Estimates of S.139 (As offered on October 29, 2003)Fact Sheet on CRA Cost Projections of S.139 (As offered on October 29, 2003)Pew Center Assessment of EIA Analysis of the Climate Stewardship Act
  • In This Issue:Remarks by Eileen Claussen at the Environmental Council of the States Meeting, "ClimateChange: Then and Now"State Actions that Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions: A Searchable Database -- 3 New Case Studies now AvailableFuture U.S. Energy Scenarios - Pew Center ReportSubmit Comments on the Pew Center's Initiative: Beyond Kyoto "CLIMATE CHANGE: THEN AND NOW"Remarks by Eileen Claussen, President, Pew Center on Global Climate Change at the 2003 Annual Environmental Council of the States Meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah on August 11, 2003. Read the full speech. STATE AND LOCAL GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTION PROGRAMSThis database contains information on state and local programs that directly or indirectly result in net greenhouse gas emissions reductions. The database currently contains 42 case studies of programs from 27 states. Three new case studies have been added from California, Maryland and Pennsylvania.California's Greenhouse Gas Standards for Vehicles programMaryland's Smart Growth programPennsylvania's Green Pricing: Electric Consumer Choice programFull database PEW CENTER REPORT EXAMINES FUTURE U.S. ENERGY SCENARIOSAbsent a mandatory carbon cap, U.S. carbon dioxide emissions are likely to rise across a wide range of possible energy futures, according to a recent report released by the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, "U.S. Energy Scenarios for the 21st Century." The report discusses three divergent paths for U.S. energy supply and use from 2000 through 2035, and the effect of climate policy on the three scenarios. It also includes assessments of key energy technologies for the future. BEYOND KYOTOA new Pew Center initiative, "Beyond Kyoto: Advancing the International Effort Against Climate Change," examines core challenges in mobilizing an effective international response to climate change. Phase one of the initiative is a set of six "think pieces" by former negotiators and other climate experts from developed and developing countries. Working drafts of the papers are now available for review and comment (through September 1, 2003) on the Pew Center's website: