(Denver, CO – April 16, 2019) The Colorado House of Representatives today passed common sense legislation to put Colorado in driver’s seat in the race to protect all Coloradans from climate pollution. The bill passed by an overwhelming 41-to-23 vote, under the leadership of House Speaker KC Becker and Representative Dominique Jackson.
“Climate change is the pivotal challenge of our time,” said EDF senior director of climate regulatory strategy Pam Kiely. “Colorado’s policy makers are meeting this urgent challenge head on with bold leadership to address our state’s dangerous climate pollution, and they’re doing it in a way that’s consistent with science and that will strengthen our clean energy economy and create jobs.”
Colorado faces severe threats from climate change, including intensifying and more frequent wildfires, worsening summer smog that causes asthma attacks and other serious health problems, catastrophic flooding, and prolonged drought that threatens our farmers and our national and state parks.
House Bill 19-1261, which passed today, establishes Colorado climate pollution reduction goals anchored in science and provides for the development of cost-effective solutions to achieve these pollution cuts.
The bill provides for Colorado to cut climate pollution by at least 26 percent by 2025, 50 percent by 2030, and 90 percent by 2050 (relative to 2005 pollution levels). It also directs the Air Quality Control Commission to take cost-effective action to achieve these reductions and to protect the health and well-being of all Coloradans from climate pollution.
Colorado has a strong foundation to achieve these vital climate pollution reduction goals:
- Xcel Energy, Colorado’s largest power provider, committed to achieve an 80 percent reduction in carbon pollution by 2030 and to eliminate all carbon pollution from its power generation for Colorado by 2050.
- The Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment recently adopted clean car standards that will save Coloradans hundreds of dollars at the gas pump annually and reduce dangerous climate and smog pollution.
- The Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment has also required Colorado’s oil and gas industry to achieve reductions in dangerous methane pollution. Those reductions will also reduce the unnecessary waste of Colorado’s oil and gas resources. Under new legislation the department will work to modernize these important pollution limits to protect public health and the environment based on advances in technologies and common sense clean air solutions.
“This bill is a win for Coloradans on so many fronts – it will help protect our health, protect our environment, and secure clean energy economic prosperity for our state,” said Kiely. “We should all be grateful to the Colorado House of Representatives, and especially Speaker of the House KC Becker and Representative Dominique Jackson, for their great work today.”
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