Wednesday, January 10, 2007

You Can't Blame Everything On El Nino


Our friends at Citizens Campaign for the Environment tell us that its not the hot air in Albany alone that's causing global warming.

NYS is taking action. Now, so can you! Read on, and then, take action. . .

New York State is Taking Action on Global Warming!

The problem of global warming is large, but understanding how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is the best way to combat it. Both individual and collective actions help curb global warming. New York State spearheaded and joined forces with neighboring states to create the first mandatory program, called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), to reduce regional greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity-generating sector.

CT, DE, NH, NJ, NY and VT have committed to collectively reduce greenhouse gasses. MA and MD are expected to join RGGI soon.

How does the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Work?

This innovative program limits greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, including carbon dioxide (CO2), by allocating allowances in each of the participating states. Through a phased approach, each state reduces the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) that power plants are allowed to emit over a number of years. Modeled after the successful acid rain program that significantly reduced sulfur dioxide (SO2) and Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) through a cap-and-trade approach, RGGI provides incentives for polluters to reduce GHG emissions by creating a market for “carbon credits”. If one company wants to pollute, they would have to buy “credits” for the legal right to release GHG emissions. If another company reduces emissions, then excess credits can be sold. RGGI will be effective because it gives companies an incentive to reduce pollution, forces companies to pay when they contribute to global warming, and reduces overall emissions that cause global warming.

Tell New York to Stay Strong on Global Warming!

New York’s draft rule is currently out for public comment until January 12. Similar to the effective acid rain program, energy producers will buy “carbon credits” to represent the amount of pollution emitted. A limited amount of credits will be sold, and NYS is proposing to use the carbon credit proceeds to fund energy efficiency and clean energy technology programs to benefit public health, the environment, and the local economy. Special interests are lobbying against this effective approach. The DEC must hear that you support this proactive and effective program.

What You Can Do:
Write to the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).

Letter writing tips:

Include your name and full address.

Make sure your letter is in your own words.

Thank the DEC for their leadership on addressing global warming in a regional approach, and share your personal concerns about global warming and its impacts.

Tell the DEC that you support the energy efficiency and clean energy technology programs to be funded by auctioning RGGI credits, and oppose giving power companies pollution credits at no cost.

Thank the DEC for the opportunity to comment, and request a written response.

Please send a copy of any response you receive to CCE’s Farmingdale Office—it helps track progress on the issue.

Write to:
Franz Litz
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Division of Air Resources
Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative
625 Broadway Albany, NY 12233

Thank you for taking action to fight global warming!

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