Climate change is a crucial and urgent challenge. Acadia Center advances policy levers and other tools to reduce emissions of carbon pollution and mitigate the worst effects of fossil fuel dependence. Our solutions are designed to produce near term benefits while building sustainable, longer term improvements.

Some examples of Acadia Center’s model policy initiatives, and their long-term impact, include:

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is often the cleanest, lowest-cost resource for powering homes and businesses, but for a long time it has been underused, undervalued and dismissed as an uncertain part of the energy system. Acadia Center advocated  policies that call for states to invest in all cost-effective available energy efficiency investments that are cheaper than buying power from powerplants. Acadia Center also pressed for changes in state energy planning so there is a focused voice for efficiency and distributed clean energy options —stakeholder councils that bring energy consumer sectors and other stakeholders together to execute funding, monitoring and implementation of efficiency programs. Now Acadia Center’s state models have risen to the highest rankings in the nation for savings and investment levels and are winning recognition as effective policy designs.

Ambitious, Innovative Maps to the Future

In the mix of negative news about our collective ability to address the climate challenge, Acadia Center is demonstrating the ability to achieve real emissions reductions while advancing a cleaner future.

Acadia Center was an early voice that recognized that reducing harmful emissions that contribute to global warming is a task that states and regions – not only the federal government – could and should confront head on. Acadia Center’s Connecticut Climate Change Roadmap was a first-of-its-kind resource that directly tackled the large scale need to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050, and researched and mapped the strategies to bring the state to meeting greenhouse gas reduction targets. The Roadmap covered multiple sectors and presented viable policy models with information that quantified the potential benefits and impacts. Building on that success, the Connecticut Roadmap was replicated by other states in all parts of the country. Acadia Center’s Climate Change Roadmap for New England and Eastern Canada reached across jurisdictions and outlined replicable solutions to hit state and regional emissions targets.

Acadia Center continues this ambitious and viable approach to impact the big decisions happening today that will shape the energy system of tomorrow. That means assessing the potential for the region to use cleaner, affordable alternatives to tar-sands-derived oil or natural gas. In its EnergyVision framework, Acadia Center paints the pathway to reaching 80% greenhouse gas emissions reductions by 2050 through reforms in four intersecting areas of the energy system.