Local

LOCAL

LOCAL

Never before have local actions been so critical. Governors, mayors, and town boards have initiated and expanded their commitments to climate action even as the U.S. federal government has stepped away from international climate leadership and rolled back more than 95 Obama-era climate policies, ambitions and regulations. There is a fascinating US interactive map, populated in real time, showing a geographical overview of financial incentives and regulatory policies, state-by-state, that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency here

States, Districts, and Territories are taking the initiative to switch over to renewable energy sources. 

Already, in 2015, Hawaii established a goal of 100% renewable electricity sources by 2045.

In 2018, under Governor Jerry Brown, California required that 50% of their electricity be powered by renewable resources by 2025 and 60% by 2030, while calling for a “bold path” toward 100% zero-carbon electricity by 2045.

By May 2019, (following Washington D.C. in January; New Mexico in March; Nevada and Puerto Rico in April) Washington became the 5th state to pass a 100% clean energy target. By the third week of June, New York’s Senate & Assembly both passed the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Signed by Governor Cuomo on July 18, 2019, it is the most comprehensive and aggressive climate change legislation in the nation.

Gov. Janet Mills addressed the UN on September 23, 2019, and pledged that Maine will go carbon neutral by 2045; Colorado signed legislation which reduces 2030 greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50%; Nevada signed legislation to move to 50% renewable by 2030, and several more states, including New Jersey and Massachusetts, adopted plans to achieve 100% clean energy by 2050, with Washington  delivering legislation mandating 100% clean electricity by 2045.

Cities, towns and municipalities are equally motivated: over 153 cities and thirteen counties have already adopted ambitious 100% clean energy goals. Six additional U.S. cities — Aspen CO, Burlington VT, Georgetown TX, Greensburg KS, Rock Port MO, and Kodiak Island AK — have already hit their targets, generating 100% of their energy from clean, non-polluting and renewable sources.

LOCAL NEWS

A Left-Right Alliance Puts Iowa’s CO2 Pipelines on the Presidential Agenda

By Jonathan Weisman 07/30/23
Emma Schmidt, a lifelong environmental activist in Rockwell City, Iowa, had long searched for potent allies in her fight against a massive carbon dioxide pipeline planned for her state.
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It’s time for local politicians to show climate leadership

By Adam Lent 07/26/23
In a shameful week, the two main national parties turned their backs on the environmental challenge just as its consequences became horrifically clear.
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A progressive take on New York Legislature’s climate goals

By Susan Arbetter 06/28/23
Extreme heat continues across the American south this week while Canada experiences its worst wildfire season on record, also driven by extreme heat. According to Reuters, the searing heat is part of a global pattern…
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Virginians Are Fighting Climate Change Through Down-Ballot Races

By Madeline Ostrander 06/27/23
n off-year primary election used to be a quiet affair. But last week’s Virginia primaries caught national attention—even races that played out in humble settings and small locales—as the front lines in fights over everything…
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Supreme Court Allows Major State, Local Government Climate Change Litigation to Proceed on Merits

By Richard Frank 04/26/23
This week the U.S. Supreme Court gave state and local governments a big–if preliminary–legal win against the fossil fuel industry. The justices declined to take up numerous cases in which government entities have sued oil,…
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RMI

Supporting Local Governments as Climate Change Threatens Their Communities

By Ella Mure and others 04/21/23
This year’s Earth Day theme encourages us to evaluate the ongoing investments needed to protect our planet. With climate disasters becoming more frequent and severe, the US Government Accountability Office warns climate change will cost…
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Wall Street firms face W.Va. boycott over alleged fossil fuel bias

By Jordan Wolman 06/14/22
BlackRock Inc., Wells Fargo & Co., JP Morgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley, The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and U.S. Bancorp are due to be placed on West Virginia’s Restricted Financial Institution List in 45…
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Red voters for green energy? Conservatives say they support solar and wind power too

By Kyle Bagenstose 06/10/22
During the Cold War, John Lehman served as Secretary of the Navy under President Ronald Reagan. Later, he was appointed a Republican member of the 9/11 commission.
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Trump-era rollbacks left US behind peers in climate change fight: report

By Zak Budryk 06/01/22
For the Environmental Performance Index (EPI), researchers traced countries’ progress toward net-zero emissions, a goal nearly every nation has established. From 2010 to 2019, the U.S. ranked 20th out of 22 western democracies and 43rd…
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“No time to ask nicely”: Protesters arrested after blocking roads over Manchin, Sinema obstruction

By Julia Conley 05/24/22
Pro-democracy campaigners in West Virginia and Arizona on Monday risked arrest at sit-ins in downtown Charleston and Tucson, demanding that Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema end obstruction of their party's agenda and allow…
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Manchin’s strategy isn’t climate denial — it’s craftier

By Chelsea Harvey 12/23/21
Sen. Joe Manchin isn’t a climate denier — at least not in the traditional sense. He doesn’t deny the existence of human-caused climate change.
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npr

What losing Build Back Better means for climate change

By Lauren Sommer 12/20/21
With billions of dollars for clean energy, the Build Back Better legislation has the potential to substantially and rapidly cut heat-trapping emissions in the U.S. But Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., rejected the bill on Sunday,…
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KEY RESOURCES

Many changes are going to come about because politicians fight to control global warming through laws and regulations. Some of them are worthy of our praise and support. These governors have joined the US Climate Alliance and have pledged to uphold the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement within their respective state.

 

TCI’s Regional Policy Design Process

05/15/20
In light of the unprecedented need for governors and agencies to respond to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Transportation and Climate Initiative jurisdictions have shared an adjusted timeline for developing a regional clean…

To Counteract Trump on Climate, States Set Clean Energy Targets

09/24/19
Democratic state lawmakers passed a wave of bills this year they hope will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change, even as the Trump administration moves in the opposite direction.

The United States Conference of Mayors

07/02/19
The United States Conference of Mayors is the official non-partisan organization of cities with a population of 30,000 or larger. Each city is represented by its chief elected official, the mayor. View their 2019 Adopted…

Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate Change

05/28/19
Co-chaired by Maros Sefcovic and Michael Bloomberg, The Global Covenant of Mayors serves cities and local governments by mobilizing and supporting ambitious, measurable, planned climate and energy action in their communities by working with city/regional…

United States Climate Alliance

04/05/19
The United States Climate Alliance is a bipartisan coalition of governors committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement. Smart, coordinated state action can ensure that the United States…

100% Commitments in Cities, Counties, & States

04/05/19
Across the U.S. over 90 cities, more than ten counties and two states, have already adopted ambitious 100% clean energy goals. Six cities in the U.S.--Aspen, Burlington, Georgetown, Greensburg, Rock port, and Kodiak Island--have already…

We Are Still In

01/31/19
Already in 2017, former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg formed the “We Are Still In” coalition, which now includes some 3,500 leaders across the country who have pledged action on climate change that would, if…

Citizens Climate Lobby

01/19/19
Citizens’ Climate Lobby is a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots advocacy organization focused on national policies to address climate change. By building upon shared values rather than partisan divides, and empowering our supporters to work in keeping…

Beyond Carbon

01/09/20
Check if your state, territory, or district is working on climate and clean energy policies, including 100% clean energy laws, carbon pollution reduction targets, and policies to expand transit and support electric vehicles.

MORE NEWS

Climate hawks pressure Biden to replace Fed chair

By Sylvan Lane   09/02/21  
Environmentalists are pressing President Biden to factor in the Federal Reserve’s record on climate change under Jerome Powell when he decides whether to renominate the central bank’s chairman for a second term.
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Progressives launch campaign to exclude gas from Congress’s clean electricity program

By Rachel Frazin   09/01/21  
Progressives are pushing to try to keep natural gas out of a Democratic proposal aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the electric sector.
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Inspired by Texas Dems, Lindsey Graham urges Republicans to ‘leave town’ to stop $3.5 trillion budget package

By Katie Shepherd   07/19/21  
In a ploy to hamper Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget package, Sen. Lindsey O. Graham on Sunday proposed his fellow Republican senators follow the example of the Democratic Texas lawmakers who left their state to stop legislation that would have…
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Bipartisan Group Backs Gas-Tax Increase as Option to Fund Infrastructure

By Andrew Duehren   04/23/21  
A bipartisan group of House lawmakers endorsed a report that includes raising the gasoline tax as a possible way to pay for infrastructure spending, lending support to a measure that both Republican and Democratic proposals…
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Philadelphia Commits to Carbon Neutrality By 2050

By Rudy Chinchilla   01/15/21  
Scientific consensus indicates “that we have to go further if we are truly to prevent the worst impacts of climate change,” Mayor Jim Kenney said.
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Cities, states would lose voice on model energy code updates under proposal

By Alex Ruppenthal   01/13/21  
The International Code Council is set to consider a proposal that would strip public sector members of their voting rights on updates to influential model building energy code.
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‘All-Out Offensive’ Planned on Climate Bills in Mass

By Colin A. Young   12/26/20  
With the time left to make a deal ticking away and other matters jockeying for attention, climate policy advocates are mounting an effort -- one group declared it "an all-out offensive" -- to keep pressure…
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Survey: Voters support bold actions on transportation, climate issues

By DJ Simmons   12/25/20  
A majority of eastern U.S. voters support the multi-state Transportation and Climate Initiative as a way to jump-start the economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recently released scientific survey of…
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The District, three states sign agreement to curb transportation emissions

By Luz Lazo   12/22/20  
The group, which could be joined by other states, set a goal of reducing vehicle pollution by 26 percent in the next decade.
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Connecticut power plant proposal at odds with climate goals, critics say

By Lisa Prevost   12/18/20  
As Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont’s climate council finalizes recommendations for how the state can meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals, state agencies are simultaneously overseeing final approvals for a new natural gas-fired power plant.
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Michigan utilities funded candidates during key caucus leadership races

By Tom Perkins   12/18/20  
Campaign finance records show an uptick in activity as lawmakers challenged a critic of the utility industry’s agenda.
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OPB

Reporting on timber lobbying prompts Oregon Gov. Kate Brown to call for audit of state institute

By Tony Schick and Rob Davis   09/03/20  
The Oregon Forest Resources Institute worked to undercut academic research and acted as a lobbying and public relations arm for the timber industry. Now, the governor has asked for an audit.
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Providing a Local Perspective on Global Climate Change

By Abby Leeds   06/30/20  
How important is climate change to you personally? This question is guaranteed to produce a wide range of opinions across America. The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication groups the American public into six audiences…
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States Are Laying a Road Map for Climate Leadership

By Sam Ricketts, Rita Cliffton, Lola Oduyeru, and Bill Holland   04/30/20  
The United States and the world face an urgent crisis—one that requires American leadership at home and abroad. But while the Trump administration is utterly failing in the task due to incompetence, indifference, corruption, or…
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Climate successes from the states

By Jamie DeMarco   04/17/20  
Climate successes from the states By Jamie DeMarco, CCL State-Level Carbon Pricing Coordinator We are all looking forward to the day when we can safely meet with your community and lawmakers again, working for climate…
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Public Supports East Coast Climate Pact—More Than Governors

By Irvin Dawid   03/06/20  
Public comments were largely favorable regarding the 12-state program intended to reduce transportation emissions by using a cap-and-invest system, but governors are cautious due to an expected effect on gas prices.
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GOP lawmakers walk out after Oregon climate bill advances

By Andrew Selsky   02/25/20  
Republican Senators Slipped Out Of The Oregon State Capitol On Monday, Preventing The Senate From Convening In An Attempt To Doom A Bill Aimed At Stemming Global Warming.
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VOX

This one weird trick can help any state or city pass clean energy policy

By David Roberts   12/26/19  
Federal climate politics in the US remains as gridlocked as ever, but the past few years have seen a remarkable flourishing of climate and clean energy policy at the subnational level, in states and cities…
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2019 Was a Watershed Year for Clean Energy Commitments from U.S. States and Utilities

By Lori Bird and Tyler Clevenger   12/20/19  
U.S. states and utilities made more ambitious clean energy commitments in 2019 than ever before, with many committing to reaching 50% or 100% clean energy in the coming decades.
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A Climate Change Double Whammy in the U.S. Corn Belt

By Marie Denoia Aronsohn   12/18/19  
The United States Corn Belt includes western Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, eastern Nebraska, and eastern Kansas. The region has dominated corn production in the U.S. since the 1850s, accounting for more than a third of…
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In Florida and elsewhere, GOP pressured over climate change

By Bobby Caina Calvan   11/27/19  
Two-thirds of Americans are willing to pay more for everyday items made out of environmentally sustainable materials instead of single-use plastic, according to a survey from PBS NewsHour and Marist Poll.
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New York City Council Passes Coastal Resiliency Plan for East Side

By Shachar Sharon   11/16/19  
NYLCV Pens Op-ed and Sends Letter of Support to City Council
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From Apple to wineries, California companies turn to solar amid outages

By Marie C. Baca   10/18/19  
As climate change threatens to make power outages more frequent, California businesses are turning to solar-powered systems to protect their operations when the lights go out
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Miami Beach declares a climate emergency

By Alex Harris   10/18/19  
Miami Beach has declared a climate emergency, thanks to the advocacy efforts of Miami youth climate advocates. They see it as a victory, and a first step toward convincing the city to do more to…
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Climate Change Is Happening on the East End

By Alisha Steindecker   09/25/19  
The flooding on sunny days on Dune Road in East Quogue or the harmful algal blooms found in Georgica Pond in Wainscott or Lake Agawam in Southampton are no accident. The earth is warming, and…
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Newsom will announce new plans for a satellite to track climate change

By Taryn Luna   09/25/19  
Former Gov. Jerry Brown famously said last year that California would launch its “own damn satellite” to track climate change in defiance of the Trump administration. On Wednesday, Gov. Gavin Newsom will announce a new…
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Students demonstrate on Long Island to demand action to stop climate change

By Khristopher J. Brooks and Jean-Paul Salamanca   09/20/19  
Whether they trekked into Manhattan or traveled from school grounds to Town Hall, students on Long Island spoke up in unison Friday as youth across the globe demanded action from world leaders on climate change.
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Minnesota grows business, jobs as it greens the local economy

By Neal St. Anthony   09/15/19  
Renewables now account for 25% of total Minnesota power production. Policymakers and utilities are talking about doubling that by 2030.
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A southern governor’s climate and clean energy plan aims for zero emissions

08/30/19  
North Carolina's Republican-controlled legislature remains an obstacle to big changes, so the administration is looking for work-arounds and short-term wins....
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CNN

The Detroit Zoo plans to be entirely powered by renewable energy by 2021

By Ryan Prior   08/27/19  
Windmills and solar panels may soon be keeping the lights on in the reptile house, and throughout the Detroit Zoo. The zoo, located in Detroit's suburb of Royal Oak, says it's shifting to being powered…
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Colorado cooperative to hit clean energy goal a decade early

By Allen Best   08/27/19  
A Colorado cooperative last week announced that it could reach its 70% decarbonization goal by as early as next year, a decade ahead of the 2030 target announced less than a year ago.
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New Mexico’s new energy law prompts legal challenge

By Susan Montoya Bryan   08/27/19  
New Mexico’s new landmark energy law is facing its first legal challenge as a coalition of environmental and consumer advocacy groups filed a petition Monday with the state Supreme Court over concerns that certain provisions…
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How the 5 riskiest U.S. cities for coastal flooding are preparing for rising tides

By Mary Caperton Morton   08/06/19  
The five U.S. cities most at risk from coastal flooding have begun to make plans for adapting to rising sea levels. Some are further along than others.
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Petaluma creates city commission to address climate change

By Yousef Baig   07/26/19  
To help Petaluma better navigate its stated climate emergency, the city is establishing the first public body in Sonoma County designed to directly address the community’s impact on global warming.
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Push on Beacon Hill for 100% renewable energy by 2045

By Chris Van Buskirk   07/24/19  
“What has happened is we have states that now must lead on this issue because the federal government is not only doing nothing about it, they’re actually doing everything they can to deny science, to…
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Berkeley, CA sets historic law banning natural gas from new buildings

By Kristin Musulin   07/18/19  
The Berkeley, CA City Council unanimously voted this week to ban natural gas infrastructure in new low-rise residential buildings, beginning Jan 1. 2020. The legislation also requires that all new buildings in Berkeley be "electric-ready,"…
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New York Awards Offshore Wind Contracts in Bid to Reduce Emissions

By Ivan Penn   07/18/19  
New York State, which last month passed an ambitious law to reduce the emissions that cause climate change, said Thursday that it had reached an agreement for two large offshore wind projects.
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New York gets tougher on climate change: Five things to know

By Jon Campbell   07/18/19  
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed what he called the nation's most aggressive climate change benchmarks into law Thursday, kickstarting a decades-long effort to virtually eliminate the state's greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050.
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Cuomo, Alongside Gore, Signs Most Aggressive Climate Plan in U.S.

07/18/19  
Solar panels on every roof. Parking meters that double as car chargers. Wind turbines towering above farm fields and ocean waves. Cars, home furnaces and factories converted to run on electricity from renewable sources.
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