Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - May 25, 2018 


President Trump scraps planned talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. Also on our Friday rundown: California lawmakers support and emergency hotline for foster kids; and boating is a booming business in states like Minnesota.

Daily Newscasts

NH and Neighbors Bring Economic Clout to Fighting Climate Change

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative states have reduced carbon emissions by 40 percent since 2015, and supporters say the initiative helped both New Hampshire's environment and economy. (NH Sierra Club)
The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative states have reduced carbon emissions by 40 percent since 2015, and supporters say the initiative helped both New Hampshire's environment and economy. (NH Sierra Club)
June 29, 2017

CONCORD, N.H. — President Trump may try to withdraw the country from the Paris climate agreement, but the states that are already cutting emissions wield a lot of political and economic power.

Nine states, including New Hampshire, participate in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a mandatory, market-based program to reduce carbon emissions. A new analysis by the Acadia Center shows that since 2005, the RGGI states have reduced carbon emissions by 40 percent while their economies have grown by 25 percent - outpacing the rest of the country.

Catherine Corkery, chapter director with the New Hampshire Sierra Club, said the numbers show RGGI has improved the state's environment and economy.

"We've created over 1,000 new jobs,” Corkery said. "For every RGGI dollar that is put into a project, $3 to $4 are invested in addition, usually with private funds."

The RGGI states combined represent the sixth-largest economy in the entire world, according to the Acadia Center.

The report said that participation in RGGI has done more than reduce carbon emissions. The center's Jordan Stutt said reductions of other pollutants such as sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides have led to a decline in the number of asthma attacks, heart attacks, premature deaths, and missed school and work days - all of which save money.

"When we quantify all of those avoided impacts, we see that RGGI has delivered $5.7 billion in avoided health costs for the region,” Stutt said.

New Hampshire is not among the RGGI states that joined with seven other states and territories to form the U.S. Climate Alliance following Trump's announcement. While the alliance doesn't have a coordinated plan to reduce emissions, Stutt noted that some of the states already have policies in effect or legislation in progress.

"There are a number of different vehicles being discussed to address this issue,” he said. “And it's encouraging to see that all these states are going to be working together to achieve that goal."

Marlborough Rep. Marge Shepardson gathered more than 2,400 signature in one week for a petition asking Gov. Chris Sununu to allow the Granite State to join the Climate Alliance.

Mike Clifford, Public News Service - NH