While Feds Stall, Locals Tackle Big Issues
Posted on Aug 11, 2006
In the face of stagnant federal policy, more and more localities have adopted their own measures to address the environment, stem-cell research and immigration. Impatient for action from deadlocked Washington, cities and states have increasingly crafted their own policies regarding the major issues of the day, even reaching out to foreign leaders. California, for instance, has required automakers to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% as of 2016, with 10 states following suit.
This flurry of action is part of a growing movement among state and local leaders who have given up hope that Congress and the administration will tackle major issues, and are launching their own initiatives on immigration, stem cell research and energy policy. Last week alone, former president Bill Clinton launched an effort with 22 of the world’s largest cities to cut their emissions, while California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) and British Prime Minister Tony Blair said they will explore trading carbon dioxide pollution credits across the Atlantic.
Recently, 22 states and the District of Columbia have set standards demanding that utilities generate a specific amount of energy—in some cases, as high as 33 percent—from renewable sources by 2020. And 11 states have set goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.