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Global Warming Solutions: Reduce Emissions

In order to effectively address global warming, we must significantly reduce the amount of heat-trapping emissions we are putting into the atmosphere.

The good news is that we have the technology and practical solutions at hand to accomplish it.

As individuals, we can help by taking action to reduce our personal carbon emissions. But to fully address the threat of global warming, we must demand action from our elected leaders to support and implement a comprehensive set of climate solutions.

A Comprehensive Set of Smart Solutions to Reduce Emissions

Power Plant Carbon Standards: A Climate Game Changer

The Clean Air Act requires the Environmental Protection Agency to take steps to reduce air pollution that harms the public's health. This includes global warming emissions, which the EPA has found to endanger public health.

The EPA is moving forward with its responsibility to set standards that reduce global warming emissions, but it must do more to to protect public health. In particular, the EPA must establish strong power plant carbon standards for new and existing plants that limit the amount of carbon they are allowed to emit.

Climate 2030: A National Blueprint for a Clean Energy Economy

We can make the transition to a clean energy economy today, while protecting our climate, saving consumers money, and putting Americans back to work. What we need is a set of smart, praactical policies to jump-start this transition without delay and maximize the benefits to our environment and economy.

This comprehensive, peer-reviewed study outlines the steps we can take today to build a clean energy economy, dramatically reduce emissions, and give our children a healthy future.  

Building Support for National Climate Policies

Extreme heat, drought, storms, and other weather disasters are increasingly fueled by climate change and affect everyone regardless of political affiliation. To address global warming, policy makers must find bipartisan solutions that substantially reduce heat-trapping emissions.

Taking climate action can bring significant benefits to the United States, and the economic facts clearly support U.S. action to curb global warming emissions — including the prohibitive costs of doing nothing. An effective national climate policy must include several key elements; one effective approach would be a well-designed cap-and-trade program for carbon emissions.

In July 2013, President Obama outlined a national climate action plan that focuses on several specific ways to reduce emissions. Given the current political situation in Washington, it is unlikely that any broader national climate policies will emerge from Congress in the near-term future — continued and growing public demand for climate action will be essential to enact effective global warming solutions in the years to come. 

State and Regional Climate Policies

Several states and regions have already established climate policies aimed at curbing global emissions, notably in California and the Northeast. Learn more about these policies — and what you can do to help support them — in these regional pages:

California & Western States |Southwest
Midwest | Northeast | Southeast

International Climate Treaty Negotiations

Global warming is a global issue. Strong U.S. action and leadership is critical, but so too are international efforts that work toward reducing emissions worldwide.

To support this effort, UCS regularly sends policy experts, scientists, and climate economists to international climate treaty negotiations, the most prominent of which is the annual Conference of Parties (COP) to the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC).

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