Program Changes Implemented In Regional Emissions Control Program

Feb 14, 2013

Credit National Parks Service

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is a collaborative effort of nine Northeast and mid-Atlantic states to lower greenhouse emissions. Changes in the program have been announced that are intended to further reduce CO2 emissions and restrict the number of allowances that are sold during the program’s auctions.

The multi-state initiative, generally referred to as RGGI, announced a 45-percent reduction in the CO2 cap from 165 to 91 million tons.  It is to decline two-and-a-half percent each year from 2015 to 2020.  The program auctions those tons of CO2 emissions, and will also no longer re-offer unsold allowances. Vermont Agency of Natural Resources Deputy Secretary Justin Johnson.

The Adirondack Council purchases RGGI allowances during the quarterly auctions in order to permanently retire them.  Spokesman John Sheehan says the program is making progress by lowering the cap, but they had advocated for an even lower level of emissions.

Independent Power Producers of NY President and CEO Gavin Donohue has two concerns that he says the changes fail to address.

NY League of Conservation Voters Legislative Director Ricardo Gotla says the move is significant for reducing emissions and providing funds for energy efficiency programs.

A link for more information on the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and the changes is available here.