The results so far are promising. The program has cut the states’ power plant pollution in half compared to 2005 levels. RGGI also has raised more than $2.7 billion, enabling the states to invest more than $1 billion in energy efficiency and $270 million in clean and renewable energy. It could raise another $7 billion more by 2030.
The program works by capping pollution from power plants, reducing those caps each year so the air keeps getting cleaner and cleaner. It also requires power plant owners to pay for their pollution, which prods them to cut their emissions even faster. Each state can then invest the money raised in energy efficiency and clean energy, which cuts global warming pollution even further.
For example, states have used RGGI funds to weatherize buildings, not only reducing pollution but also making homes and businesses more comfortable and saving people money on their energy bills. Funds have also gone to new solar panels and wind turbines, turbocharging the clean energy revolution throughout the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.