Obama announces government greenhouse gas emissions targets
By The Post's Juliet Eilperin and Anne E. Kornblut:
President Obama set greenhouse gas emissions targets for the federal government, announcing Friday that it would aim to reduce its emissions by 28 percent in 2020.
"As the largest energy consumer in the United States, we have a responsibility to American citizens to reduce our energy use and become more efficient," Obama said in a statement. "Our goal is to lower costs, reduce pollution, and shift Federal energy expenses away from oil and towards local, clean energy."
The White House estimated a savings of $8 billion to $11 billion in energy costs, and Nancy Sutley, who chairs the White House Council on Environmental Quality, estimated that it would amount to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 88 million metric tons by 2020 -- equivalent to taking 17 million cars off the road for one year
The initiative, Sutley told reporters, "will hold the federal government accountable for leading by example."
But it is not as sweeping as it could have been: It does not, for instance, include emissions that stem from the actiivity of federal suppliers, or from federal employees' commutes. And while the Defense Department pledged Friday to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in non-combat areas 34 percent by 2020, this pledge does not include combat operations, which account for 62 percent of the department's carbon footprint.
| January 29, 2010; 11:30 AM ET
Categories: Administration, Workplace Issues
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