Proposed pollution caps in the American Clean Energy and Security Act (H.R. 2454) would result in reductions of total U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 15 percent below 2005 levels by 2020. This is less than the 17 percent reduction from 2005 levels that the previous Waxman-Markey Discussion Draft as released would have achieved, according to a new analysis released by the World Resources Institute.
“Though the 2020 target is slightly less stringent, the long-term targets are still intact setting the U.S. on a pathway to cut emissions substantially from business as usual,” said John Larsen, WRI senior associate.
Larsen and Robert Heilmayr, WRI research analyst, assess reductions in GHG emissions under H.R. 2454 released May 18, 2009 and the discussion draft. Other key findings include:
- The pollution caps proposed in the ACESA would reduce total GHG emissions 15 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 73 percent below 2005 levels by 2050.
- When all complementary requirements of the ACESA are considered in addition to the caps, GHG emissions would be reduced 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 75 percent below 2005 levels by 2050.
When additional potential emission reductions are considered, the ACESA could achieve maximum reductions of up to 33 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and up to 81 percent below 2005 levels by 2050. The actual amount of reductions will depend on the quantity of international offsets used for compliance.
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