Today Senator Carolyn Comitta and Representative Dianne Herrin, accompanied by Governor Wolf, announced companion legislation (Senate Bill 15 and House Bill 1565) that directs proceeds from Pennsylvania’s pending participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to a suite of initiatives to bolster renewable and net zero energy, reduce air pollution, and fund community-focused programs. John Walliser, Senior Vice President, Legal & Government Affairs for the Pennsylvania Environmental Council, issued the following statement:
PEC commends Senator Comitta and Representative Herrin for spearheading legislation to propel net zero energy innovation and investment in Pennsylvania. Equally important, this bill provides direct support to people and communities impacted by current and legacy environmental issues, as well as the ongoing and inevitable energy transition.
Pennsylvania needs an “all in” approach for decarbonization. Participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, coupled with investment and benchmarks to drive clean energy, will ensure our state remains an energy epicenter in the decades to come. Without this framework, Pennsylvania will quickly fall behind other states in the growth of new energy jobs, manufacturing, and technologies.
Projects eligible for support under this legislation include, but are not limited to:
- Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage
- Abandoned Oil and Gas Well Plugging and other Environmental Cleanup Projects
- Energy Efficiency for Residential, Commercial, and Industrial Energy Users
- Agricultural and Forestry Stewardship Practices
- Clean Energy Investment and Deployment
- Programs and Direct Assistance for Workers and Communities Impacted by Energy Transitioning
- Projects that Benefit Environmental Justice Communities
- Direct Energy Bill Assistance for Low-Income Residential Customers
The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is a market-based platform used by eleven Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the electric generation sector. Between 2009 and 2017, RGGI states have seen a net economic benefit of $4.7 billion from the program.
Read more about PEC’s decarbonization work here.