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  • bluecheese4u bluecheese4u Jul 25, 2013 2:42 PM Flag

    Maryland Governor Unveils Strongest US Plan To Fight Climate Change

    Maryland Governor Unveils Strongest US Plan To Fight Climate Change

    July 25, 2013 Silvio Marcacci

    If Governor Martin O’Malley gets his way, Maryland may soon lead America in the fight against climate change and transition toward a clean energy future.

    In a speech today, O’Malley announced an aggressive plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions and boost renewable energy in his state. Under the plan, Maryland would meet the goal of reducing emissions 25% by 2020 targeted by the state legislature under the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act.

    The comprehensive new standards would place Maryland in the upper echelon of state action to fight climate change, second only to California, and cover virtually every source of emissions across the state.

    Lower Emissions Start In Maryland’s Power Sector

    O’Malley’s plan includes more than 150 programs and initiatives designed to reduce emissions and create green jobs across every aspect of Maryland’s economy. Instead of hurting businesses, the plan to fight climate change will boost the state’s growing green economy and create 37,000 new jobs with $1.6 billion in new economic activity.

    Projected Maryland CO2 sector reductions
    Maryland emissions reductions by sector graph via Climate Change Maryland

    As with every other state, Maryland’s emissions cuts must start with the state’s power generation sector. Electricity consumption represented 40% of the state’s emissions in 2006, but the 30 programs in O’Malley’s plan that target the energy sector will reduce emissions by 25.3 million tons per year, nearly half the reduction needed to meet the 25% reductions goal.

    The full litany of energy sector programs is too long to list here, but they center on the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), EmPOWER Maryland, and the state’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS).

    These programs aren’t new for Maryland, but they’re expanding. O’Malley pledged to push to expand the state’s RPS to 25% by 2020 (up from the current 20%

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