Opinion: N.J. needs clean energy now! Dump the carbon-trading scheme

new jersey environment news, air pollution

LENA SMITH / STAR-LEDGER – By signing an executive order to join a regional carbon program, Gov. Phil Murphy wants to send a clear message: The Chris Christie anti-environmental era is over.

But this plan could actually undermine his more important campaign pledge of delivering a 100 percent clean energy system for New Jersey.

In 2011, Chris Christie withdrew our state from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a market-based program that aims to lower carbon emissions while raising money for clean energy. Getting New Jersey back into RGGI has been a priority of Democratic lawmakers ever since. While that might sound like a no-brainer, the truth is that RGGI has failed to deliver the promised benefits …

Lena Smith is a policy advocate at Food & Water Watch.

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