Climate change poses an increasing threat to Virginians' public health, national security, environment, and economy. Virginia has joined states, cities, and counties across the country that understand all levels of government must act on climate if we are to protect our communities from the worst impacts of climate change.
I support setting the strongest possible standard to cut Virginia emissions from power plants through participation in a carbon market. This is a critically important step toward carbon pollution reductions.
I request that DEQ use its authority to adopt and implement a final standard that:
*Caps and reduces carbon pollution as rapidly as possible, beginning as soon as possible. The 2020 base year emissions cap should be between 30 and 32 million tons.
*Covers carbon pollution from biomass facilities, which can be more climate polluting than fossil fuel power plants.
*Sets the expectation of continued annual carbon pollution reductions in Virginia after 2030.
Closely monitors implementation in order to respond to instances of disproportionate environmental burdens experienced by any communities, particularly low-income and vulnerable communities that have traditionally borne the brunt of pollution.