Wolf sets greenhouse gas emission reduction target

The greenhouse gas reduction goals stem from the state’s draft Climate Action Plan, released in November by the Department of Environmental Protection. (Image by Frank Rumpenhorst /DPA)

The greenhouse gas reduction goals stem from the state’s draft Climate Action Plan, released in November by the Department of Environmental Protection. (Image by Frank Rumpenhorst /DPA)

Gov. Tom Wolf has set a new goal for the state to combat climate change: reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26 percent by 2025.

Long-term, the governor wants to see an 80 percent reduction by 2050.

He announced the goals Tuesday in Pittsburgh, saying they are based off the state’s 2005 greenhouse gas emission levels.

“We’re about halfway there, which means we have work to do,” he said. “[We] will look for better ways to create energy. I think the capital markets are already moving in the direction of solar and wind. We need to do more to make sure that what we’re doing is getting us there as quickly as possible.”

The goals stem from the state’s draft Climate Action Plan, released in November by the Department of Environmental Protection. The draft states that if every state and nation met comparable goals, global temperature rise could be kept below the 2-degree Celsius threshold that experts say is necessary to ward off catastrophic consequences of climate change.

Wolf on Tuesday also announced the “GreenGov Council,” a committee that will work with all state agencies to reduce energy use and bolster energy efficiency within state buildings. The council has several of its own targets:

  • A 3 percent reduction in overall energy consumption per year.
  • Replace 25 percent of the state car fleet with electric vehicles by 2025.
  • Offset at least 40 percent of the commonwealth’s annual electricity usage with renewable energy.

This story will be updated.

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