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Arizona Governor Issues Order to Promote Energy Efficiency

by: SGW    11 September 2006

Order Steps Up Efforts to Reduce "Greenhouse Gas" Emissions

Governor Janet Napolitano today signed Executive Order 2006-13, geared toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), after receiving a report from her Climate Change Advisory Group (CCAG) on cleaner air. The Action Plan, a product of more than a year's work by the group, contains a report on the effects of climate changes and offers a list of recommendations to cut back on GHG. The Advisory Group is made up of a broad-based group of stakeholders, including Phelps Dodge, Tucson Electric Power, Salt River Project, Arizona Public Service, the American Lung Association of Arizona and the Greater Flagstaff Forest Partnership, among others.
Arizona's GHG emissions levels have risen dramatically over the last 16 years. Elevated GHG levels are believed to contribute to drought, extreme heat and other negative environmental conditions, such as poor air and water quality.

The Executive Order establishes a statewide goal to reduce Arizona's future GHG emissions to the 2000 emissions level by the year 2020, and to 50% below the 2000 level by 2040.

The Executive Order also creates a Climate Change Executive Committee whose task it will be to develop a strategy to implement the recommendations in the Action Plan and to explore ways to meet Governor Napolitano's challenge of reaching the 2000 emissions level even sooner - by Arizona's Centennial in 2012 (the text of the order is attached in PDF format).

Recommendations made by the Advisory Group include:
• Improving energy efficiency for buildings and appliances;
• Reducing energy demand by consumers and businesses;
• Increasing the development and use of renewable energy sources;
• Providing incentives for hybrids and other low emissions vehicles;
• Achieving a lower-GHG-emissions state vehicle fleet;
• Reducing vehicle idling and adopting cleaner vehicle emissions standards;
• Increasing the production and use of ethanol and biodiesel;
• Using better land and forest management practices to increase efforts to remove carbon from the atmosphere (known as "carbon sequestration.")


"Implementing these recommendations should cut our demand for energy by increasing energy efficiency, and improve air quality, all the while saving Arizonans money though reduced fuel costs and lower electricity bills," said Napolitano. "Developing Arizona's renewable energy sources, such as solar, biomass, biofuels, wind and geothermal will help us reach these goals, and at the same time, create jobs. It's a win-win for all of us."

The Western Governors Association (WGA), of which Gov. Napolitano is a member, called for action on climate changes at its summer meeting in Arizona. The states themselves are taking action on climate change issues because of a lack of action from the federal government.

The report will be available online this week on the Governor's website at www.azgovernor.gov.