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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: June 20, 2018 12:21 PM
From: Representative Christopher M. Rabb
To: All House members
Subject: Keystone Carbon Fee Trust Fund
In the near future, I will be introducing legislation requiring Pennsylvania to reduce dangerous carbon pollution—ensuring that as a state we are, at a minimum, achieving a 28 percent reduction in pollution by 2025, relative to 2005 levels, and at least an 80% reduction by 2050.

Public policy leadership is essential to ensuring that Pennsylvania achieves reductions that are consistent with the pace and scale that science demands to avoid the worst effects of a changing climate. The legislation would provide for the development of a flexible, market-based strategy to most cost-effectively reduce carbon pollution statewide. While encouraging, economic and technological trends alone will not be sufficient, and waiting to act only exacerbates the challenge and increases the cost of solutions. The purpose of the legislation is to catalyze leadership – reducing greenhouse gas emissions that are already causing global and local climate impacts, and ushering in a clean energy future for the Commonwealth that can benefit all citizens.

Climate change is a generational challenge – but there is a clear path forward, supported by former Secretary of State under President Reagan, George Shultz. Rapid deployment of wind, solar, and storage technologies is helping catalyze a transformation in electric power sector – and innovation is illuminating a path forward for transportation and industry. Through well-designed policies, we can accelerate the low-carbon transition—unleashing the full potential of breakthrough technologies.

This legislation would boost Pennsylvania’s competitiveness and leadership in deploying advanced technologies and growing the clean energy economy. Today, more than 58,000 Pennsylvanians work in clean energy. A clear limit on carbon emissions would encourage the further growth of a new, highly-skilled workforce for the modern age. Reducing carbon pollution would also benefit the Commonwealth by avoiding harmful impacts of climate change, including extreme heat, reduced agricultural yields, and increased air pollution that causes harmful health impacts for many of our most vulnerable communities.
The legislation would achieve an ambitious economy-wide reduction of carbon dioxide pollution in Pennsylvania. A flexible mechanism for compliance would promote the most economically efficient opportunities to reduce emissions across the state, mitigating costs to our most vulnerable Pennsylvania communities, while maximizing the benefits. Flexible market-based frameworks can let businesses find the cheapest ways to rise to the challenge, and can help achieve environmental goals more quickly and much more cost-effectively while enhancing economic growth – growth designed to benefit all communities across the state.
It is imperative that Pennsylvania act to reduce carbon pollution now, in order to secure the greatest benefits for our communities, our economy, and the climate at the lowest cost; a solution that will not pick winners or losers.

I invite you to join me in co-sponsoring this vital legislation.