The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, known as RGGI, is a cooperative between 9 northeast states to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by periodically auctioning pollution allowances. Those allowances determine how much pollution can be emitted from power plants. The money that each state makes is returned, for the most part, to energy efficiency and clean energy programs. Environmental Advocates of New York’s latest report on the impact of auctioning pollution credits predicts that homeowners across the state will save 46-million dollars on energy bills over the next decade. Deputy Director Dave Gahl expects actual savings to be greater.
This is one of a series of reports assessing the Initiative, according to Dave Gahl.
The Adirondack Council participates in the RGGI auctions, buying the allowances in order to permanently retire the credit, and cut emissions. Council Legislative Director Scott Lorey praised the Environmental Advocates report.
A lawsuit was filed last June challenging the constitutionality of New York;’s participation in RGGI. Mark Smith, the lawyer representing those who brought the suit, says only a small group of individuals actually benefit from RGGI proceeds.
The Environmental Advocates report says NYS had raised 345-million dollars from the RGGI auctions.