EXPLORE RGGI BENEFITS TO YOUR STATE
The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI, pronounced “Reggie”) is the Northeast’s innovative regional program to limit carbon pollution from power plants. RGGI is a cooperative effort among nine states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire,
New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
New Jersey was pulled from the program in 2011 by Governor Christie, but the current governor, Phil Murphy, has launched a process to re-enter the program. A parallel process is underway in Virginia, where the Northam administration is working to begin participation in the RGGI market by 2020.
RGGI sets a limit on the amount of carbon pollution power plants in the region are allowed to emit each year. Companies that own power plants must purchase allowances for the carbon they’re emitting. These allowance purchases generate revenues for participating states to invest in energy efficiency, clean energy, and supporting impacted communities.
Each year the regional carbon limit is lowered, cutting down on pollution year after year. As the carbon limit, or “cap”, gets lower every year, the quantity of allowances decreases, and it becomes more expensive to pollute. This incentivizes energy efficiency and the deployment of low-carbon energy sources--all of which creates jobs in the region. According to a recent report, in the last three years, RGGI has helped grow participating states’ economies by $1.4 billion while adding 14,500 years of
full-time employment in the region.
RGGI has been a powerful force in cutting air pollution, lowering consumer energy costs, and driving the clean energy economy forward. Recent changes to strengthen RGGI will build on
these benefits to help the participating states thrive.
WHAT EFFECTS HAS RGGI HAD ON THE REGION?
To find out how RGGI has benefited
your state specifically, click here.
RGGI investments made in 2015 alone will avoid 5.3 million short tons of carbon dioxide emissions, or the equivalent of taking more than 1 million cars off the road. This decrease in pollution has clear public health benefits. RGGI has prevented at least 8,200 asthma attacks and 300 premature deaths, and avoided $5.7 billion in health-related costs between 2009 and 2014.
From 2009 to 2015, RGGI generated more than $1.77 billion in clean energy and energy efficiency investment for the participating states. These investments have driven $4.3 billion in regional economic growth and 44,700 job-years.
Energy bill savings:
Investments of RGGI proceeds through 2013 are projected to return more than $2.9 billion in lifetime energy bill savings to more than 3.7 million households and 17,800 businesses. Investments made in 2015 alone are estimated to yield $2.3 billion in lifetime energy bill savings for the residents of RGGI states.
WHAT DO RESIDENTS OF RGGI STATES
THINK OF THE PROGRAM?
There is strong support for RGGI among residents in participating states. A recent poll found that 77 percent
of voters in the participating RGGI states support their state’s involvement
in the program, with 47 percent noting that they strongly support it.