Montana becomes 25th state to join the US Climate Alliance

Bipartisan Climate Alliance represents 55 percent of U.S. population and 60 percent of national GDP

Montana Governor Steve Bullock today issued an executive order to join the U.S. Climate Alliance. In his announcement, he stated, “Climate change is already impacting our way of life and our economy. How we choose to respond to the changes around us offers a pivotal opportunity to both safeguard our traditional strengths and diversify and grow new opportunities for our future. Like all difficult issues we tackle here in Montana, I know we can find a path forward by getting together, rolling up our sleeves, and focusing on the values we share in common.”

His announcement comes on the heels of the two-year anniversary of the U.S. Climate Alliance, formed on June 1, 2017 in response to President Trump’s announced intent to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement. With Montana as its newest member, the Alliance represents 55 percent of the U.S. population, an $11.7 trillion economy, and 40 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. The climate and clean energy policies of Alliance states have created over 1.7 million renewable energy and energy efficiency jobs, equivalent to over 60 percent of all clean energy jobs in the United States.

By joining the Alliance, governors commit to:

  • Implement policies that advance the goals of the Paris Agreement, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emission by at least 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025
  • Track and report progress to the global community in appropriate settings, including when the world convenes to take stock of the Paris Agreement, and
  • Accelerate new and existing policies to reduce carbon pollution and promote clean energy deployment at the state and federal level.

In addition to joining the Alliance, Governor Steve Bullock ordered the creation of the Montana Climate Solutions Council, which will provide recommendations and strategies for the state to:

  • Develop a state Climate Solutions Plan that includes recommendations toward achieving long-term net greenhouse gas neutrality, with an interim goal of achieving net zero GHG emissions for average annual electric loads by 2035;
  • Work with the Montana University System to build resilience across the state; and
  • Advance technologies that support low and negative emissions while addressing the transition needs of communities through economic development and workforce strategies.

U.S. Climate Alliance Executive Director Julie Cerqueira welcomed Governor Steve Bullock’s announcement, stating that “In just over two years, the Alliance has grown from three governors to 25, sending a strong signal that state leaders across the country are continuing to rise to the climate change challenge and build bipartisan solutions that aim to make their states more resilient, equitable, and climate-friendly. We welcome Governor Bullock and Montana into the Alliance and applaud the efforts he outlined in today’s executive order. His vision for Montana will not only start to address the state’s largest source of GHG emissions but will also spur technological innovation and economic development in communities across the state.”

The U.S. Climate Alliance is a bipartisan coalition of 25 governors committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | Hawaii | Illinois | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Montana | Nevada | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Puerto Rico | Rhode Island | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | Wisconsin

Delaware to eliminate HFCs to confront Climate Change

HCR 60 supports Governor Carney’s directive to create regulations

Governor John Carney has directed the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control to propose regulations by March 2020 that will eliminate the use of dangerous hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in Delaware. HFCs are used as replacements for ozone-depleting substances in air conditioning, refrigeration, foam-blowing, solvents, and aerosols, but they are significantly more potent than carbon dioxide in contributing to climate change.

Representative Debra Heffernan, Senator Nicole Poore, and Senator Stephanie Hansen introduced House Concurrent Resolution 60supporting the regulations, joining Governor Carney to confront the impact of HFCs on climate change in our state and region:

“Delaware is already feeling the effects of climate change. We are the lowest-lying state in the country, and our sea level is rising at twice the global average. This is a real threat that we need to confront together, and it’s not just about the environmental impact in our state. Any changes in weather patterns jeopardize Delaware’s $8 billion agricultural industry and our $3.4 billion tourism economy. For the sake of our economy and our environment, it’s crucial we continue to address climate change with urgency,” said Governor Carney. “As Delaware continues our fight against climate change, my administration is moving toward eliminating hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) as an increasingly harmful element to our state and our environment. HFCs are growing in the atmosphere at a rate of 8 percent a year and can be hundreds of times more potent than carbon dioxide in contributing to climate change. That’s why I have directed the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) to begin developing regulations that address HFC use in Delaware. We’re proud to have the support of members of the General Assembly in this effort, and I want to thank Representative Heffernan, Senator Poore, and Senator Hansen for their partnership on this issue.”

“We see the impacts of climate change nearly every single day, with stifling air pollution, rising flood waters and unpredictable, severe weather and climate events. When we have a chance to stand strong and combat this global threat head-on, we need to take it,” said Representative Debra Heffernan, the prime sponsor of HCR 60. “Man-made hydrofluorocarbons are damaging to our environment and quality of life, and they need to be regulated. I’m proud to stand with Governor Carney and DNREC on this issue, and work toward guidelines to regulate the production and consumption of this extremely dangerous substance for the benefit of all Delawareans.”

“Protecting the health of every Delawarean is incredibly important to all of us and that includes the impact we are having on our environment,” said Senator Nicole Poore. “As a small state, we can’t reverse climate change alone. But we are eager to join with our neighbors to take a collective approach to improving our air quality and reversing sea level rise. Working together, we can make a real difference and this resolution is one, small step in the right direction.”

“When it comes to battling climate change, we must explore every tool available to us,” said Senator Stephanie Hansen. “HFCs were once hailed as more environmentally-friendly alternatives but new technologies being developed across the country and here in Delaware will allow us to further reduce the negative impact that these types of substances can have on our world. That’s an opportunity we must embrace and I look forward to working with DNREC once these regulations are developed.”