Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Environmental Quality
Air Pollution Control Board
Regulation for Emissions Trading [9 VAC 5 ‑ 140]
Action Repeal CO 2 Budget Trading Program as required by Executive Order 9 (Revision A22)
Comment Period Ended on 10/26/2022
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10/26/22  11:13 am
Commenter: Emily Irvine

Virginia Needs to Stay In RGGI

Even after hearing Governor Younkin speak at the Virginia Clean Energy Summit last week, I cannot understand why Virginia would consider leaving the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Since joining RGGI in 2021, Virginia has earned over $452 million from the program, reduced carbon emissions from electricity generation, and enjoyed lower costs for electricity. The funds generated through RGGI are specifically ear-marked for low-income energy efficiency and flood resilience programs, both of which are vital as Virginia looks to lower its carbon emissions and adapt to climate change. The communities throughout Virgina with the least ability to deal with these issues on their own (aka poor and rural communities) stand to benefit the most from these funds. And speaking of climate change, RGGI's cap-and-trade scheme provides both energy producers and users with a predictable map for transitioning to the clean energy future that is definitely coming. Between its participation in RGGI and the VCEA, Virginia is a leader, not just in the South but in the whole Country, of the energy transition. We are currently a model for how states can leverage reduction of carbon emissions into jobs and opportunity by showing that responsibly addressing climate change can be good for people and the planet. Withdrawing from RGGI would be a major step backwards for Virginia. 

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