Pennsylvania Climate Roadmap
In 2007 PEC released its Pennsylvania Climate Change Roadmap, analyzing greenhouse gas emissions in the Commonwealth and providing more than 30 policy recommendations to reduce our climate footprint.
In 2005, the Pennsylvania Environmental Council convened a group of stakeholders representing business, farm, energy generation and environmental interests to help create a Climate Change Roadmap for our state. There was no doubt within the group that the scientific debate about the human impacts on climate change is over. A report from the Union of Concerned Scientist released in October 2006 only reinforced concerns about the potential impacts on Pennsylvania.
The Roadmap, released in 2007, shows solutions and opportunities for Pennsylvania that can make it a national leader in addressing climate change. The Roadmap makes 38 specific recommendations on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in several sectors: energy supply, transportation, residential, commercial and industrial buildings, agriculture, forestry, land use, on carbon sequestration and more.
The recommendations include common sense steps like increasing the use of renewable sources of energy, increasing transportation and building energy efficiencies and taking advantage of Pennsylvania’s natural assets to offset greenhouse gas emissions by increasing reforestation, encouraging agricultural practices, and using our native geology to sequester carbon dioxide emitted by our coal-fired power plants and other sources.
In addition, the Roadmap presents energy efficiency recommendations that put energy use more directly in the hands of consumers – giving people and businesses better control over how they can manage their use and reduce their costs.
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”
– Thomas Edison
Clearly, addressing climate change will require hard work, but it also presents opportunities. Many of the recommendations in the Climate Roadmap present economic opportunities for Pennsylvania and our citizens because they would create new industries and business.
Climate change will fundamentally affect quality of life in Pennsylvania. It will impact the crops we raise, the storms we get, the kinds of forests and wildlife we see, the amount and kind of energy we use, and how we develop our land. Because Pennsylvania contributes to the problem in a major way, we must take responsibility for finding solutions.