Most states are combating climate change and growing their economies

Arizona far short of decarbonization rate required to achieve U.S. emissions target

By Mike Maciag | Governing

Countries around the globe have committed to decoupling economic growth and carbon dioxide emissions in an effort to curb the effects of global warming. States, too, have worked to cut emissions while growing their economies, but the degree to which they’ve succeeded in doing so varies greatly.

A new Brookings Institution report compares state’s recent economic growth to changes in carbon emissions. In all, 33 states and the District of Columbia achieved reductions in emissions while expanding their economies between 2000 and 2014. The others saw their emissions continue to rise.

The report comes at a time when federal leadership on the issue is set to experience a dramatic shift. President-elect Donald Trump rejects scientific evidence around global warming, has pledged to pull out of the Paris climate accord and nominated Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a leader in the legal battle against President Obama’s climate change policies, to lead the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Nationally, carbon dioxide emissions have fluctuated in recent years, experiencing the largest declines during the Great Recession.



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December 2016