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New state climate change report provides blueprint for new jobs, green economy, energy independence
OLYMPIA – A new report continues Washington’s bold leadership against climate change and shows how creating new “green” jobs will keep the state at the forefront of building a clean, green economy.
Gov. Chris Gregoire required the report, “Growing Washington’s Economy in a Carbon-Constrained World,” in her requested climate change legislation, HB 2815. The 2008 Washington Legislature approved the bill, and she signed it into law.
“This report is our blueprint for continuing to build the new, clean, green economy,” said Jay Manning, director of the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology). “We will reduce our emissions of planet-warming pollution and, in the process, develop new technologies that create clean energy and new jobs while reducing our dependence on foreign oil. The plan describes changes we will make to transition to a green economy, shrink our carbon footprint, and do our part to stabilize the climate.”
“We’re constantly competing in the world market for private investment dollars, especially in clean technology and renewable energy,” said Juli Wilkerson, director of the Washington Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development (CTED). “A strong climate change policy will help Washington’s businesses become even more competitive. We need to show business that we are serious about climate change – now and for the long term. This will attract and keep businesses here, putting people to work today and growing jobs for the future.”
Ecology and CTED led the report’s creation. The report also includes the work of the departments of Transportation, Natural Resources and Agriculture; the Western Climate Initiative; the many business and environmental interests, tribal, local and state governments, and others who made up the state’s Climate Action Team; and other statewide groups that examined forestry, agriculture and land use.
- Outlines how curbing Washington’s changing climate will create jobs, make us more energy independent, and grow the green economy.
- Details what is already being done to curb climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions and additional actions necessary to achieve required greenhouse gas reductions.
- Summarizes the Climate Action Team’s recommendations for increasing energy efficiency and green buildings; expanding waste reduction and recycling; improving transportation choices to cut greenhouse gas emissions; and using the State Environmental Policy Act to limit climate change.
- Discusses how land-use choices can influence climate change.
- Advocates adoption of the Western Climate Initiative’s cap-and-trade program for controlling carbon emissions. A cap-and-trade system is the needed centerpiece policy for reducing emissions, and will spur the creation of innovative technologies and green jobs.
Read the report at http://www.ecy.wa.gov/climatechange/2008CompPlan.htm.
Find fact sheets that outline cap-and-trade and other issues at http://www.ecy.wa.gov/climatechange/factsheets.htm.
Media Contacts: Seth Preston, Ecology media relations, 360-407-6848; 360-584-5744 cell
Penny Thomas, CTED media relations, 360-725-2805
Dave Workman, Ecology media relations, 360-407-7004
For more information: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/climatechange/index.htm
Ecology’s Web site: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/