Note: an update to this chart is available. For the latest information, go to U.S. Climate Targets.

This analysis provides an assessment of reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that could be achieved by the measures contained in the Waxman-Markey Discussion Draft (WM-DD) released on March 31, 2009. To account for the effects of different components of the proposal, reduction estimates are divided into three scenarios:

  • Total emission reductions under just the two proposed emissions caps (the cap on hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) consumption and the economy-wide cap).
  • Total emission reductions under the caps and all other complementary requirements, including emission performance standards for uncapped sources and required components of the supplemental reduction program through 2025.
  • A range of potential additional reductions that could be achieved through the 1.25 offset requirement and supplemental reductions beyond 2025.

Key Findings

  • The pollution caps proposed in the WM-DD would reduce total GHG emissions 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 73 percent below 2005 levels by 2050.
  • When all complementary requirements of the WM-DD are considered in addition to the caps, GHG emissions would be reduced 31 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 76 percent below 2005 levels by 2050.
  • When additional potential emission reductions are considered, the WM-DD could achieve maximum reductions of up to 38 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and up to 83 percent below 2005 levels by 2050. The actual amount of reductions will depend on the quantity of offsets used for compliance.