Thursday November 13th, the Commission on Climate Change voted to recommend that Virginia adopt as mandatory the energy efficiency standards outlined by the American Council for an Energy Efficiency Economy (ACEEE), an independent research firm.
Specifically, the Commission recommended that the state require a 19% reduction in electricity demand by 2025 – which would displace the need for the equivalent of 10 Wise County coal-fired power plants!
The Commission also recommended that Virginia reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050 – with an interim goal of a 25% reduction by 2020.
These goals are in line with the recommendations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and are far more aggressive than the original goals outlined by Governor Kaine.
We cannot overstate how tremendous a victory this is for the state of Virginia – and how you helped overcome the tough odds stacked against us. For months, Virginia’s big utilities have attempted to refute ACEEE’s findings, and to avoid any mandatory efficiency goals.
But thanks to you, the political will to do what it takes to stop global warming is building in Virginia.
Of course, we still have our work cut out for us. In the coming weeks and months, we will have to redouble our efforts to encourage the Governor and the Legislature to adopt the Commission’s recommendations, which reflect the best scientific understanding of what we need to do to prevent catastrophic climate change from harming our health, our economy, our communities and our environment.
That’s why we’ll be holding a special training at a statewide legislative workshop for environmentalists, to be held in Richmond on December 6th – to lay the groundwork for our efforts in 2009.
Today, you should take pride in what our work and champions of clean energy on the Commission have accomplished.
Today, we can say that Virginia is poised to take the lead in the fight against climate change.
Your support and hard work made it possible.
Wise Energy for Virginia