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Christie Pulls out of RGGI Again


Date : Mon, 7 Jul 2014 15:28:37 -0400

For Immediate Release

July 7, 2014

Contact Jeff Tittel, 609-558-9100

Christie Pulls out of RGGI Again

Today the DEP released rules in state Register formally pulling New Jersey out of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.The rules come after a March Appellate Court decision finding that New Jersey could not exit RGGI without going through a DEP rulemaking process. Jeff Tittel, Director, NJ Sierra Club released the following statement in response to the rules:

"After the court slapped the Christie administration for illegally pulling out of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in March, the Christie administration is now trying to exit the program through a rulemaking process.We believe that the Governor pulled out of RGGI because he cares more about his national political ambition than the environment and people of New Jersey."

"NJ Sierra Club will oppose the DEP rule making and the attempt to pull of RGGI.RGGI worked to create clean energy and thousands of jobs in New Jersey.Sierra Club is not only going to oppose the rules, comment on the rules, and attend the hearings, but we also believe that these rules violate legislative intent and we will be seeking a legislative oversight resolution to pull these rules down. We believe that by pulling out of RGGI, the Governor violates not only RGGI but the Global Warming Response Act."

"The withdrawal violates President Obama's Climate Action Plan and could jeopardize New Jersey receiving federal grants.Especially after Hurricane Sandy, the public supports action on climate change, and New Jersey needs to reduce greenhouse gases and RGGI and one of the ways to do it."

"New Jersey needs to be back in RGGI to meet the requirements of the Global Warming Response Act, President Obama's Climate Action Plan and the new EPA carbon standards.Without participating in RGGI we will not meet those goals. RGGI is a proven and tested model for achieving the carbon reductions required in the new EPA Carbon Rule.In the future RGGI is going to be expanded to become more effective and include more sectors, increasing the reductions in carbon pollution."

"Instead of implementing adaptation and mitigation planning and reducing carbon pollution, the Governor is rolling back policies that reduce climate change pollution and promote clean energy alternatives.Since taking office, the Christie administration has raided around $1 billion from different clean energy funding programs, and at least $63 million dollars of that came from RGGI. The funding the Governor has diverted from the Clean Energy Fund would have created more than 5,000 jobs, resulted in 100 million tons of air pollution reductions over the next couple years, and would have created billions of dollars of economic activity. In the past, RGGI funds were used to fund the DEP Office of Climate Change, which has been eliminated, and New Jersey's work on adaptation and mitigation."

"When New Jersey participated in the program, the state achieved the RGGI greenhouse gas reduction goal of 10% in the first three years.A report by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners found that New Jersey's participation in RGGI created $151 million in economic value and 1,772 jobs in our state.Throughout the region, RGGI saved customers $1.1 billion on their electric bills and $174 million on gas bills, offsetting the $912 million paid by customers.RGGI's energy efficiency programs helped keep $765 million in regional economy instead of going to out of state fossil fuel interests, including natural gas and coal."

"RGGI generated $700 million for investment in clean energy and energy efficiency and created 16,000 new jobs since the program started.[1]
<#_ftn1>New York is investing $300 million in a clean energy bank to give out loans to businesses with revenue from the RGGI program."

"People of New Jersey demand action on climate change and want our state to reduce air pollution, for our state to be more resilient, and support growing our economy through new technology and clean energy jobs.With RGGI we can protect our environment, reduce carbon pollution, and move our state forward economically.RGGI is a win-win for New Jersey and Gov. Christie is a lose-lose when it comes to protecting our environment and reducing the impacts of climate change. The Governor would rather side with the fossil fuel in Washington than clean energy jobs in New Jersey."

A public hearing concerning this proposal will be held on Friday, August 8,

2014, at 10:00 A.M. at:

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection

First Floor Hearing Room

401 East State Street

Trenton, New Jersey

Rule Proposal: http://www.nj.gov/dep/rules/proposals/20140707a.pdf

------------------------------------------------------------------------

[1] <#_ftnref1> http://www.rggi.org/docs/Documents/2012-Investment-Report_ES.pdf

-- 
Kate Millsaps
Conservation Program Coordinator
NJ Chapter of the Sierra Club
609-656-7612
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Received on 2014-07-07 12:28:37

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