US can meet 2020 reductions targets without Congress

• February 7, 2013
US emissions scenarios, Source: World Resources Institute, 2013

US emissions scenarios, Source: World Resources Institute, 2013

A new report published by the World Resources Institute (WRI) lays a path forward for the US administration to achieve emissions reductions targets without legislation from Congress.  While the US is not currently on track to reach its goal of reducing emissions 17% below 2005 levels by 2020, if action is taken quickly in strategic areas, it is not too late for the nation to meet its reductions commitments.  By taking domestic climate action now, the US would send a signal to the international community that it is prepared to negotiate an aggressive climate treaty in 2015.

Can the US Get There From Here?” found that the Administration has the opportunity to move forward in four key areas: implementing strong standards for carbon dioxide pollution from existing power plants; reducing non-energy sources of emissions, including hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which are commonly found in refrigerators and air conditioners; limiting methane emissions from natural gas production; and increasing energy efficiency from industry and home appliances.

“The Administration has multiple ways to move forward with smart policies to reduce U.S. emissions. The best opportunity is to enact new standards for existing power plants, which represent one-third of all U.S. emissions,” said Nicholas Bianco, Senior Associate, WRI, and the lead author of the report. “The Administration has the ability to put the U.S. on track to meet its commitments, and can do so in a cost-effective and efficient manner.”

Read more: World Resources Institute>>

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