Snyder votes to end Pennsylvania’s involvement in RGGI

Cites the initiative as a job killer in the coal industry

HARRISBURG, Dec. 15 -- State Rep. Pam Snyder today voted in favor of a concurrent resolution to disapprove the Environmental Quality Board regulation regarding the CO2 budget trading program known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, or RGGI.

RGGI is a multi-state partnership that creates a cap on the amount of energy that power plants can generate. To show compliance with the cap, power plants must pay a tax for each ton of CO2 they emit.

The House voted today in a bipartisan manner to adopt Senate Concurrent Regulatory Review #1, which has already been adopted by the Pennsylvania Senate. By adopting this resolution, the General Assembly sent a clear message to the Wolf administration that it’s against joining RGGI.

Snyder released the following statement after the vote:

“RGGI is nothing but an unfair tax on the fossil fuel industry that will devastate the communities I represent. RGGI will artificially and prematurely shut down coal-fired power plants across Pennsylvania, the same ones that light our lamps and heat our homes.

“We’ve heard that RGGI will generate millions of dollars, but the DEP recently acknowledged that RGGI revenue projections have been reduced from $300 million to as little as $127 million. There are no plans how to spend the money or how much state will even get from it.

“I believe in climate change, but RGGI has nothing to do with climate change. In fact, RGGI will stifle the growth of the natural gas industry, which has already led the charge in reducing Pennsylvania’s carbon emissions by 40%.

“At the end of the day, RGGI is a job killer. Forcing the closure of more power plants is setting up these communities -- my communities -- for failure and devastation. If Pennsylvania remains a member of RGGI, my district will lose hundreds of jobs to our neighboring states. By voting in favor of adopting SCRRR1, I’m standing up for my constituents, my neighbors and my district.”