Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), the co-author of the only climate change bill to pass a chamber of Congress, today praised the announcement that the carbon pollution cap for states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) will be strengthened considerably -- going from 165 million tons down to 91 million tons. The new cap level locks in emission reductions achieved to date, and continues to drive additional reductions through 2020.
"Massachusetts and other Northeast states are proving that smart climate policies save consumers money and create jobs. Climate change is real and so are the economic benefits of addressing it," said Rep. Markey, the top Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee and the Dean of the Massachusetts congressional delegation. "By continuing to aggressively cut pollution, Massachusetts and New England will show the rest of America the benefits of the clean energy revolution."
"To some Massachusetts might be the Bay State, but we know it's really the brain state, where innovative ideas are creating jobs and cutting pollution," concluded Rep. Markey. "I want to congratulate Gov. Patrick for his leadership in bringing Massachusetts into RGGI and his efforts to ensure that it continues to be effective in cutting pollution and driving energy efficiency investments. This is just the latest example of his work to harness the brain power of Massachusetts to grow our economy and create jobs."
"President Obama has made it clear that finding solutions to combat climate disruption is a national priority, and he can look no further than Massachusetts and New England for a pollution-cutting success story," continued Rep. Markey. "The president has put polluters on notice that curbs on heat-trapping pollution are coming, and I look forward to him using his executive authority to continue his record of cutting pollution. I will keep fighting in Congress to increase American clean energy jobs and eliminate tax giveaways for Big Oil."
Rep. Markey co-authored the Waxman-Markey climate change and clean energy bill, which passed the House of Representatives in 2009. That bill would have cut the pollution that is causing global warming by 17 percent by 2020 and more than 80 percent by 2050.