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New Climate Federalism: Defining Federal, State, and Local Roles in a U.S. Policy Framework to Achieve Decarbonization

In the U.S., the scale and urgency of the climate crisis requires that each level of government — federal, state and local — fully bring their strengths to the table. The possibility of eventual federal reengagement on climate policy puts in question the future roles of state and local governments in carrying out such policies. To take a closer look at which strengths these levels of government can leverage, WRI convened a group of thought leaders among current and former U.S. federal, state and local government officials for a recurring dialogue. Together, they laid out a vision for what climate action could look like at all levels of government and agreed upon a set of “Principles for a New Climate Federalism.” This paper sets out the context and findings of the dialogue discussions, and proposes a working federalism framework to delineate roles within a future federal climate policy.

Key Findings

Executive Summary

Full executive summary available in the paper.

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