Hawaii Aims to Become Carbon Neutral

June 4th 2018

HAWAI’I State Governor, David Ige, has signed three bills that set a carbon-neutral goal for the islands by 2045, create a carbon offset program and require a sea-level rise analysis in environmental impact statements.

Energy efficiency will be c entral to the pacific isalnd state’s efforts in cutting carbon emissions, combatting climate change and rising seas.
 
“Climate change is real and we’re seeing its impacts right now in our island state. Taken together, this suite of bills establishes policies and programs that acknowledge and address this reality” said Ige.
 
HB2182 – Makes Hawaiʻi carbon neutral by 2045 and establishes the Greenhouse Gas Sequestration Task Force. HB 2182 becomes Act 15 and takes effect on July 1, 2018.
 
“One year ago, Hawaiʻi became the first state to adopt a law aligning with the Paris agreement to combat climate change. Today we take the next step and pledge to be carbon-neutral by 2045, the same year we expect to reach our goal of generating 100 percent of our electricity from clean, renewable sources,” said Gov. Ige.
 
HB1986 – Creates a framework for a carbon offset program that allows for carbon credits through global carbon sequestration protocols. HB 1986 becomes Act 16 and takes effect on July 1, 2018.
 
“We see tremendous potential for restoration, protection and management of forest areas in Hawaiʻi to offer cost-efficient climate change mitigation. That’s why this framework for capturing carbon through reforestation and carbon farming is an important step forward,” Ige said.
 
HB2106 – Requires a sea level rise analysis in environmental impact statements before building projects. HB 2106 becomes Act 17 and takes effect upon approval.
 
“Sea level rise is already having an impact on beaches, roadways and homes near the shoreline. As a result, we face difficult land-use decisions, and requiring an analysis of sea level rise before beginning construction is just plain common sense,” said Ige.

Picture of Honolulu viewed from Diamond Head crater by Cristo Vlahos – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0.

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