Despite Bold Targets, VT’s Climate Pollution Continues to Rise

Vermont seems to take climate change seriously. Our legislature set goals to significantly reduce global warming pollution, and we declared “We’re Still In” after Trump abandoned the Paris Climate Accord.

And yet Vermont’s climate pollution has increased 16% since 1990. Why?

The answer is simple. Goals are nice, but without requiring action they don’t result in much.

That’s why VPIRG is working to pass the Vermont Global Warming Solutions Act.

It’s clear we need something more substantial than unenforceable goals if we’re going to do our part to address the climate crisis and move Vermont to a sustainable, clean energy future.

It’s time to require that Vermont’s government make measurable progress each year toward our climate targets, just as other New England states have done.

Required climate commitments are a practical and proven success, as states like Massachusetts have found. While Vermont’s emissions have gone up, theirs have gone down.

The Global Warming Solutions Act would make Vermont’s existing carbon pollution goals enforceable requirements and allow enforcement through court action if our state government fails to act. While the Act would direct the state to evaluate and implement the best approaches to emissions reduction, it would not be prescriptive about how these reductions are achieved.

Join us in telling Vermont legislators to pass the Global Warming Solutions Act: www.vpirg.org/GWSA


Sources: MA Dept. of Environmental Protection, US Environmental Protection Agency (for NH), NYSERDA,  VT Agency of Natural Resources

Note: NY and VT data is updated through 2015, MA and NH through 2016.