Pennsylvania governor signs greenhouse gas executive order
© WikiMedia (Governor Tom Wolf)

Pennsylvania governor signs greenhouse gas executive order

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed an executive order on Tuesday that places new goals and restrictions for the state regarding greenhouse gas emissions.

When announcing the executive order, the governor stated “In the absence of leadership from the federal government, states and cities are stepping up and doing their part to reduce emissions.” By 2050, the state will reduce 2005 greenhouse gas emission levels by 80 percent. The performance goals for the state include:

  • 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.

  • Procure renewable energy to offset at least 40 percent of the commonwealth’s annual electricity use.

The executive order establishes the GreenGov Council, which will be in charge of implementing the executive order. The council will be co-chaired by the secretaries of the Departments of General Services, Environmental Protection, and Conservation and Natural Resources.

Climate change has been a growing concern for many governments around the world. In September the Pacific Islands Forum called climate change the “single greatest threat” to people in the Pacific. In November 13 US government agencies released a report describing economic impacts climate change would have on the country. The Paris Agreement, an international agreement to limit global temperature rises, went into effect in November 2016.