Green groups push Northeast states to update regional carbon market

By Jordan Wolman | 07/10/2024 06:35 AM EDT

It’s the first sign of organized pressure on the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to set new climate goals.

Emissions rise from smokestacks.

Environmental groups want Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative states to accelerate their program review. Charlie Riedel/AP

A coalition of environmental groups is making the first move to apply organized pressure on 10 Eastern states to set new climate goals for a regional carbon market and provide a status update on a review of the program that is more than 18 months overdue.

Details: The groups will say in new letters, led by Acadia Center and set to be released Wednesday, that they “have grown increasingly concerned with the lack of communication and engagement” from the Northeastern and mid-Atlantic states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

The escalation comes as member states have fallen behind on a regularly scheduled program review that began in February 2021 and was supposed to last two years. The review is designed to assess the broad impacts of the program, which caps and prices power sector emissions from participating states and charts future emission reduction goals.


With the review having stretched into a fourth year, no agreement has been announced on the program’s new emissions cap. The most recently updated timeline promised a conclusion in January of this year. A program spokesperson didn’t share any updates on timing.