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Pew Center Study Addresses Global Climate Change

In a report from the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, a culmination of a two-year effort that articulates a pragmatic course of action across all areas of the economy, is the first comprehensive plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.

The Agenda for Climate Action identifies both broad and specific policies, combining recommendations on economy-wide mandatory emissions cuts, technology development, scientific research, energy supply, and adaptation with critical steps that can be taken in key sectors. The report calls for a combination of technology and policy and urges action in six key areas: science and technology, market-based programs, sectoral emissions, energy production and use, adaptation, international engagement. Within these six areas, the Agenda outlines 15 specific recommendations that should be started now, including U.S. domestic reductions and engagement in the international negotiation process. All the recommendations are capable of implementation in the near-term. The report concludes that there is no single technology fix, no single policy instrument, and no single sector that can solve this problem on its own. Rather, a combination of technology investment and market development will provide for the most cost-effective reductions in greenhouse gases, and will create a thriving market for GHG-reducing technologies. “Some believe the answer to addressing climate change lies in technology incentives. Others say limiting emissions is the only answer. We need both,” said Eileen Claussen, President of the Pew Center. Among the many recommendations, in connection with area of energy and electricity, is a call: “Incentives and a nationwide platform to track and trade renewable energy credits are recommended to support increased renewable power.”