A plan announced by Gov. Tom Wolf Tuesday to reduce carbon emissions in the state is getting strong support from some of the state's environmental groups.
Wolf has signed a new executive order establishing the first statewide goal to reduce carbon pollution and establish a GreenGov council to boost green and sustainable practices in state government.
Among the initiatives of GreenGov are to:
• Reduce overall energy consumption by 3 percent per year, and 21 percent by 2025, as compared to 2017 levels;
• Replace 25 percent of the state passenger car fleet with battery electric and plug-in electric hybrid cars by 2025; and
• Procure renewable energy to offset at least 40 percent of the commonwealth’s annual electricity use.
Environmental watchdog group, PennFuture, has come out in support of the plan.
“This is an historic step forward that puts Pennsylvania’s aspirations in line with what was negotiated under the Paris Agreement and sends a strong message to Pennsylvanians, the Trump administration, and the rest of the United States that Pennsylvania is committed to tackling climate change and setting a new path for how the Commonwealth produces and consumes energy,” said PennFuture president and CEO Jacquelyn Bonomo. “Pennsylvania already has the tools at its disposal to meet these goals, but the governor and state legislature must act quickly to make this goal a reality.”
The Clean Power PA Coalition also weighed in.
“We are encouraged by the governor’s willingness to lead on these issues and work with the legislature to develop required policy measures to achieve greenhouse gas targets and renewable energy generation,” the organization said in a release.
Gov. Wolf said the mission of the GreenGov Council is to encourage and coordinate the incorporation of environmentally sustainable practices into the commonwealth government's policy, planning, operations, procurement, and regulatory functions, and strive for continuous improvement in efficiency and performance.
The state will work to achieve a 26 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2025 and an 80 percent reduction by 2050, from 2005 levels.
The secretaries of the Departments of General Services, Environmental Protection, and Conservation and Natural Resources will co-chair the Council.