McCarter joins with Gov. Wolf, bipartisan and bicameral legislators and climate experts to announce Climate Action Plan, Pa.’s entry into U.S. Climate Alliance

HARRISBURG, April 29 — State Rep. Steve McCarter, D-Montgomery, joined with Gov. Tom Wolf, state Sens. Steve Santarsiero, Art Haywood, Jay Costa, House Democratic Leader Rep. Frank Dermody, Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Patrick McDonnell, fellow members of the Climate Caucus and others to announce Pennsylvania’s climate action plan and its membership in the U.S. Climate Alliance.

“Thanks to all of you for helping to support this next step in Pennsylvania’s plan to deal with the problem of climate change,” said McCarter, founder and co-chair of the Pennsylvania Climate Caucus. “Hardly a week or even a day goes by that we’re not reminded of the changes happening across our planet, our nation and this commonwealth. Emerging heat waves, rampant wildfires, drought and devastating floods have all become the new normal.

“The scientific community has been very clear: What we are witnessing now is only the beginning of what has surely become humanity’s greatest concern. By joining forces here today, this group of legislators and climate experts plan to honor our commitments to act, find climate solutions, and protect our workers and communities from the ravages of social and economic change caused by climate change.”

With dozens of legislative supporters standing with McCarter, Wolf, Santarsiero, Dermody and others Monday at the Capitol Media Center in Harrisburg, the group announced Pennsylvania’s membership in the U.S. Climate Alliance, a bipartisan coalition of 24 governors working to implement policies that uphold the commitments our nation made in the Paris Agreement. Through state-by-state alliances, it’s committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

McDonnell and Cindy Adams Dunn, Secretary of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, outlined an updated Pennsylvania Climate Action Plan, which describes more than 100 actions. Fifteen of those actions were analyzed by the DEP and its partners, the results showing emissions could be reduced by 21 percent by 2025.

“Perhaps the biggest recommendation of the Climate Action Plan is that a team effort is needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Pennsylvania,” McDonnell said. “Government leaders must lead by example, and businesses, farms, community organizations and citizens can all make a difference to fight climate change.”

McCarter and fellow state Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, recently announced a bipartisan, bicameral call to action on climate change, its impacts and the urgency needed to modernize the state’s energy standards. Together, House Bill 1195 and Senate Bill 600 urge industry leadership to adjust Pennsylvania’s electrical energy requirements to 30 percent by 2030, solidifying the path to reducing the commonwealth’s carbon footprint and establishing itself as a national energy leader.

“Senate Bill 600 and House Bill 1195 – the ’30 percent by 2030’ Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards improvement legislation – provide excellent immediate goals,” McCarter said of the recently announced companion bills. "They're reasonable, achievable and will create jobs in Pennsylvania. This legislation will help the economy. And, most importantly, it sets the stage for the much tougher work ahead."