Advocates want CT General Assembly to maintain climate goals
Wednesday, February 7, 2024
As Connecticut's legislative session begins, advocates want the General Assembly to tackle climate action.
The state established climate goals in 2008 and renewed them in 2018 but only recently have things gone off track. Connecticut is working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030 and 80% by 2050.
Republican filibusters have kept climate legislation from progressing. Numerous community groups signed a letter to lawmakers calling for proactive action on climate change.
Helen Humphreys, communications coordinator for the Connecticut Citizen Action Group, described lawmakers' first steps.
"So like, climate accountability, making sure that we actually declare a climate emergency," Humphreys outlined. "Clean energy, so making sure we're doing things like incorporating both like equity in our energy transition and then also just like expanding our renewable energy department."
She argued there is no time to wait, as Connecticut sees widespread effects of climate change costing the state more in damage. A 2022 report found Connecticut has had at least one billion-dollar disaster yearly since the 2010s. There have been 26 in the last 20 years, a sharp increase from the 1980s and 1990s.
Despite the lack of action, Humphreys feels if lawmakers do the work now, the state can reach its goals. Other states like New York have seen setbacks related to inaction or the pandemic but she noted misconceptions about climate change linger, particularly about how it was caused.
"We really need both like regulatory institutions and our corporate institutions to take responsibility and accountability for their, you know, involvement in propping up fossil fuel projects," Humphreys contended.
Industry is not the biggest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in Connecticut. Transportation is, though the numbers have fluctuated in the last five years. In 2019, Connecticut had an economywide equivalent of more than 39 million metric tons of emissions, an almost 14% decline since 1990. Emissions hit an all-time low in 2020 but estimates suggested the trend will not last long.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
The Alabama House and Senate both passed bills this week that would help people resume in vitro fertilization and provide legal protections for provid…
It's early in the season for wildfires in Nebraska, but dozens of firefighters have already been battling a large wildfire near North Platte for …
A new report finds some Missouri laws and prospective laws are perceived as discriminatory regardless of their actual intent - and it outlines some bi…
By Frank Jossi for Energy News Network.Broadcast version by Mike Moen for Minnesota News Connection reporting for the Joyce Foundation-Public News Ser…
A new Network for Public Education report grades Florida an "F" for its public school funding. As Florida lawmakers negotiate the state budget in …
As members of Congress and presidential candidates battle it out over immigration, a group of Nevada leaders and experts dedicated to advancing …
A bill in Olympia would open access to unemployment while workers are on strike, but time is running out for lawmakers to pass the legislation…
With Pennsylvania's primary election less than 60 days away, a nonpartisan group is stepping up the pace to educate people on voting by mail and by …