Global Warming Solutions

“We are the first generation to feel the sting of climate change, and we are the last generation that can do something about it.”

- Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee

The last generation

Years ago, many of us thought of global warming as something that would happen “someday.” As it turns out, “someday” is right now.

We’re fast approaching the point when scientists say climate change could tip toward catastrophe, with sea levels rising faster along our coasts, storms growing more powerful, and droughts and other forms of extreme weather more disruptive.

Credit: Leonard Zhukovsky/Bigstock

Of course, nobody wants to leave the next generation a world where heat waves, floods, droughts and worse are everyday events in an increasingly dangerous world.

If we accept, as we must, the broad scientific consensus that human pollution is accelerating these changes, then this is our challenge: stop putting carbon into the atmosphere, increase our energy efficiency, and repower our society with clean, renewable energy sources such as solar and wind.

The good news is that solutions like solar, wind and energy efficiency not only reduce carbon pollution. They also clean up our air, reduce asthma attacks, and promote energy independence.

 

Credit: Mavrick/Shutterstock

The actions the United States has taken to date are necessary — but not yet sufficient — to prevent a catastrophic rise in global temperatures. In order to keep global temperatures from rising more than 1.5°C — the international consensus target for preventing the worst consequences of warming — the U.S. must reach net zero emissions economy-wide by 2050.

Leaders at all levels of government across the United States must follow through with existing commitments to reduce pollution. Leaders at all levels of government should identify and pursue new policies to cut pollution. And the U.S. must play a leadership role in the global movement to limit global warming.

Credit: Staff

Protect our children's future

As Gov. Inslee pointed out, global warming is the challenge of our generation.

Protecting our children’s future requires us to stop dumping carbon into our atmosphere, and there’s no better place to start than with America’s No. 1 global warming polluters. 

Issue updates

Report | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Greening the Bottom Line 2012

All across California, businesses, farms, government agencies, schools and nonprofits are demonstrating that action to reduce heat-trapping emissions can improve competitiveness and strengthen the bottom line. Energy efficiency measures and clean energy projects reduce waste, cut energy costs, limit exposure to fossil fuel price spikes, and attract environmentally aware customers.

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News Release | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Wind Energy Prevents As Much Global Warming Pollution As Taking 897,000 Cars Off The Road

California wind farms currently generate energy equivalent to powering 1.2 million homes.  In 2011, California installed more new wind capacity than any other state in the nation.  If wind development continues through 2016 at a pace comparable to that of recent years, California will reduce global warming pollution by as much as taking an additional 925,000 cars off the road and will save enough water to meet the needs of an additional 40,100 people.

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Report | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Wind Power for a Cleaner America

Coal- and natural gas-fired power plants pollute our air, are major contributors to global warming, and consume vast amounts of water—harming our rivers and lakes and leaving less water for other uses. Wind energy has none of these problems. It produces no air pollution, makes no contribution to global warming, and uses no water.

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Report | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Making the Grade with Clean Energy

Solar energy makes sense for California’s schools. This first-of-its-kind report presents case studies from 18 California school districts that have installed solar energy projects at nearly 200 schools combined, illustrating the environmental, economic and educational benefits of going solar in our schools.

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News Release | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Local School District Harnesses Solar to Save Thousands

For Superintendent Andy Alvarado, who is seeing Golden Valley Unified School District (GVUSD) through tough fiscal times, embracing solar power was all about the math. With energy prices on the rise and state education dollars declining, installing affordable solar panels to produce clean electricity was a decision that is sure to receive a passing grade.

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