Tuesday, December 22, 2020

CommonWealth Magazine: "Mass., NH, RI, DC sign transportation climate pact"

From CommonWealth Magazine:

"MASSACHUSETTS, CONNECTICUT, Rhode Island, and the District of Columbia signed on to a pact Monday to put a price on the carbon contained in vehicle fuels sold within their borders and leverage the revenues gained and the resulting higher price of gasoline to cut transportation emissions 26 percent by 2032.

The group of initial participants is far smaller than Gov. Charlie Baker had been hoping for, but officials said other states in New England and down the East Coast have committed to staying at the table and possibly joining the so-called Transportation Climate Initiative in the future.

The emission reduction goal released Monday is higher than states had been talking about a year ago, but the forecasted impact on gas prices is expected to be smaller. A year ago the Transportation Climate Initiative looked at carbon dioxide cap reductions ranging from 20 to 25 percent by 2032, with gas prices rising 5 to 17 cents a gallon in 2022 depending on the size of the cap reduction. Now officials are calling for a 30 percent cap reduction (which translates into a 26 percent reduction in actual pollution) but saying gasoline prices will rise only 5 cents a gallon – 9 cents at the most – in 2022.

Katie Theoharides, the Massachusetts secretary of energy and environmental affairs, said there are price protections built into the current proposal that didn’t exist with the earlier versions."

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