MAYOR DESTEFANO SUPPORTS GROWING COALITION FOR STATEWIDE CARBON CAP TO COMBAT GLOBAL WARMING
(1/29/2008) POINTS TO CALIFORNIA, NEW JERSEY LEGISLATION AS EVIDENCE THAT
CT CAN ALSO BE A LEADER IN REDUCING GLOBAL WARMING EMISSIONS
NEW HAVEN, CT – Calling it a “moral obligation” and citing the need to address “one of the most pressing environmental issues facing our nation, our state and our city,” Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. and other local officials voiced their support today for the Stop Global Warming Connecticut Campaign. The Campaign is centered on an effort, spearheaded by the state’s leading environmental organizations, to support a mandatory statewide global warming pollution cap in the 2008 legislative session.
“In New Haven we are committed to working together to protect our health, environment, economy, and quality of life,” said DeStefano. “It’s time for decision-makers at every level of government to take responsibility for combating global warming. For this reason, I ask the State to take this matter seriously and act to protect our state’s families and our future. Here in New Haven we have committed to the 20% by 2010 clean energy campaign, encouraged green building through a number of LEED Certified projects throughout the City and even installed solar panels on the Barnard School that we’re standing in today.
In order to combat the effect of global warming, the campaign is advocating for legislation that will cap carbon dioxide and other emissions caused primarily by the burning of fossil fuels – the main source of greenhouse gasses that are causing global warming. [PLEASE SEE THE ATTACHED DOCUMENT FOR MORE DETAILS ON THE CAP AND OTHER RELATED POLICY INITIATIVES]
“We know what needs to be done to fight global warming. The science tells us that we must begin reducing our greenhouse gas emissions now and work steadily to achieve long-term reductions of 80 percent below 2001 levels if we are to avoid the worst consequences of global warming,” said Charles Rothenberger, staff attorney with Connecticut Fund for the Environment. “We have a moral obligation to act, and adopting enforceable emissions limits on global warming pollution is an essential step toward a sustainable future. Cities and towns, like New Haven, are making strides to do their part and the State has been a national leader in setting pollution reduction goals, but we need to take the next step by giving those goals teeth in the form of enforceable emissions limits.”
“Connecticut was one of the first states to set goals and release a global warming plan, but we are falling behind on taking action. All indications are that Connecticut’s global warming emissions are still rising and it’s clear that we need to pass a law requiring reductions to get back on track,” said Roger Smith, Campaign Director for Clean Water Action.
According to Jessie Stratton, Director of Government Relations for Environment Northeast, “Implementation of policies such as the low carbon fuel standard and better enforcement of the high performance building codes are the kind of practical steps CT can adopt to achieve the steep cuts in carbon pollution needed to combat global warming.”
In addition to the cap, the organizations will also be proposing a series of policies and programs – many being developed in California and New Jersey, states that have already instituted mandatory global warming pollution caps – that will help achieve the emissions reductions mandated by the cap.
“California and New Jersey have shown us how much a state can do to help lead the struggle to protect our environment; it’s time for Connecticut to join those ranks,” said DeStefano.
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