Overall, the cap-and-trade program has led to reduced emissions and lower energy prices, advocates say. Last year, the region produced about 83 million tons of carbon emissions, 37 percent less than in 2008, according to the Acadia Center, an environmental advocacy group in Boston.
In a report this year, the group found these states have reduced emissions by 16 percent more than other states, while the region’s economy has grown 3.6 percent more than the rest of the country. At the same time, energy prices have fallen by an average of 3.4 percent, while electricity rates in other states have risen by 7.2 percent.
“Adopting the 5 percent cap would signal that the RGGI states are taking climate change seriously and setting an example for the rest of the country that ambitious emissions reductions are achievable,” said Peter Shattuck, director of the clean energy initiative at the Acadia Center.
Read the full article from the Boston Globe, with additional figures based on Acadia Center data here.