CONTACT: Brooke Petry, BPetry@momscleanairforce.org, 215-326-9628
HARRISBURG, PA – With the publication of the final CO2 Budget Trading Program rule this weekend, Pennsylvania now has an established pathway to participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). RGGI is a multi-state effort designed to cut carbon pollution from power plants across participating states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Brooke Petry, Pennsylvania state coordinator for Moms Clean Air Force, issued the following statement:
“Participating in RGGI will provide incentives for electric power companies to invest in cleaner and zero-carbon energy like solar and wind, while improving efficiency and reducing air pollution. This is a huge step toward cleaning up our air to protect public health and the climate in the Commonwealth, and Pennsylvania Moms applaud Governor Wolf’s commitment to RGGI and its potential climate investments.
“Parents are not the only ones to support this initiative, a poll by the Environmental Defense Fund found that 79% of Pennsylvanians (including 66% of Republicans) support placing a limit on carbon pollution from power plants. In addition, a first-of-its-kind children’s health study from Columbia University shows that by lowering harmful soot from power plants, RGGI has helped to avoid asthma attacks, preterm births, and low birth weight.
“Pennsylvania has some of the worst air quality in the country and more premature deaths per capita from air pollution than any other state. RGGI is a proven program that reduces carbon dioxide pollution from fossil fuel-fired power plants as well as pollutants that contribute to smog and make it hard for people who have asthma, like me and my child, to breathe.
“In order to make meaningful progress on cleaning up our air quality and slowing climate change, we need to clean up our dirty power sector. Pennsylvania is the fourth dirtiest power sector in the nation. My family is relieved today to know Pennsylvania has taken one more step to prioritize cleaning up the air our children breathe and to ensure that they’ll inherit a livable planet. Moms Clean Air Force will continue to advocate for RGGI to be implemented fully, and for potential RGGI proceeds to be invested meaningfully and equitably.”