States Will Lead on Climate Change in the Trump Era

The New York Times editorial board writes that U.S. states can lead on climate action in the coming years, even if executive and agency action doesn't advance climate policy.

“State governments will serve as an important bulwark against any attempt by President-elect Donald Trump to roll back the progress the United States has made in addressing climate change. And that’s good news for the planet.” So writes the The New York Times‘s editorial board as it looks ahead to the months and years to come under a Trump administration.

The board highlights a Brookings Institution report that 33 states (including Alaska, Georgia, Tennessee and West Virginia) and the nation’s capital have cut their emissions while growing their economies. This state-led action gives the board hope that states could “blunt [the] damage” that climate policy may face from executive and agency attempts to weaken it. The authors quote promising research from M.J. Bradley and Associates that finds that “[e]ven now, many states will be able to meet the Clean Power Plan’s targets by following through on planned investments and increasing energy efficiency.”

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