“The study highlights both the need to pass climate legislation andthe importance of preserving existing authorities,” said Jonathan Lash,President of WRI. “The study’s findings make it very clear that currentefforts by Congress to curb U.S. [Environmental Protection Agency]authority will undermine U.S. competitiveness in a clean energy worldeconomy, block control of dangerous pollutants, and put the U.S. at odds with its allies.”
The report analyzes three scenarios in which potential GHG emissionsreductions are projected if the federal and state governments pursue“Lackluster,” “Middle-of-the-Road,” or “Go-Getter” agendas. Under the“Go-Getter” scenario, in which federal and state governments pursuegreenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions uncompromisingly through 2016, federal agencies like the EPA and the Departments of Energy andTransportation would be able to keep the United States on track towardsmeeting President Obama’s pledge to reduce GHG emissions by 17 percentfrom 2005 levels by 2020. Under the “Lackluster” and“Middle-of-the-Road” scenarios, the United States would fall short ofits pledge.
“Without federal climate legislation that locks in longer-termeconomy-wide reductions, the longer-term picture is unclear,” said study co-author Nicholas Bianco. “A long-term declining cap on emissions,creating a robust carbon price, is still very much needed.”