Mass. may fall short of greenhouse gas reduction goals
A new study questions the state's ability to reach its greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Massachusetts could be confronted by a 2- to 6-foot rise in sea level and up to two months per year with temperatures surpassing 90 degrees if global greenhouse gas emissions are not reduced, according to a report released this month by MassINC and the Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA). Massachusetts has committed to a 25 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2020. But this report, titled “Rising to the Challenge: Assessing the Massachusetts Response to Climate Change,” questions the state’s ability to meet this goal in just eight years.
“Our overarching conclusion is that, although Massachusetts has implemented many effective and indeed nation-leading programs, there is a real likelihood that the state will fall short of its 2020 greenhouse gas reduction goal. To ensure Massachusetts hits the target it is legally bound to achieve, the state must accelerate its effort,” the report said.
While acknowledging initiatives that address the issue of climate change and the state’s progress on such initiatives, it notes that there are few indicators or monitors that quantify Massachusetts’ progress. More specifically, it puts forward four main recommendations: the appointment of an individual to oversee climate-change efforts and their progress, the creation of a monitoring system with clear milestones and indicators, a public education campaign to explain the state’s climate initiatives, and a reassessment of the 2020 goals.
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