NUMBER 11 (2006)
EXECUTIVE ORDER ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTION
WHEREAS, the scientific consensus is that increasing emissions of greenhouse gases are causing global temperatures to rise at rates that could cause worldwide economic disruption, environmental damage and public health crises;
WHEREAS, global warming is largely due to the combustion of fossil fuels that release carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that trap heat in the atmosphere;
WHEREAS, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the National Academy of Sciences have reported that atmospheric carbon dioxide is at the highest level in more than 500,000 years;
WHEREAS, average global temperatures were the hottest on record ten of the past sixteen years. Scientists have predicted that temperatures in Illinois could rise significantly by the end of this century, leading to hotter summers, shorter winters, and increased drought and flood events;
WHEREAS, these effects could strain drinking water supplies, overwhelm sewage treatment capacity, reduce the water level of Lake Michigan, destroy wetlands, erode soil, and harm croplands, ecosystems and habitats, among other damaging effects;
WHEREAS, leading climatologists have estimated that less than a decade remains before global warming could be irreversible and that governments, businesses and households must act now to reduce greenhouse gas emissions;
WHEREAS, 165 countries and other entities around the world have signed the Kyoto protocol in recognition of the urgency in acting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions;
WHEREAS, many business leaders, including large manufacturing and insurance companies worldwide, have recognized the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions;
WHEREAS, the United States government has failed to sign the Kyoto protocol or to enact policies to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions;
WHEREAS, this lack of federal leadership leaves the United States, the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases, without an effective national strategy to address the threat of global climate change, that includes rising sea levels, droughts, flooding, severe weather events, the expansion of diseases and invasive species, and economic dislocation;
WHEREAS, the State of Illinois recognizes that states can play an integral role in adopting policies to address climate change and promote strategies to reduce greenhouse gases while advancing technologies to develop clean, renewable and homegrown energy resources;
WHEREAS, the State of Illinois is a national leader in addressing climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions though the production and use of biofuels, purchasing renewable power, encouraging agricultural conservation projects that sequester carbon, and proposing an aggressive energy independence plan that includes strategies to reduce carbon emissions, generate renewable energy and invest in energy efficiency resources;
WHEREAS, Illinois is one of the leading states in a multi-state effort to develop a national greenhouse gas registry that businesses and other entities can use to measure and manage greenhouse gas emissions;
WHEREAS, many clean energy and energy efficiency policies that reduce emissions of greenhouse gases can also boost economic development, create jobs, stabilize energy prices, improve air quality, and reduce traffic congestion, among other benefits; and
WHEREAS, Illinois' leadership in the development of state and regional climate change policies will ensure that Illinois businesses and other institutions will be well prepared to adapt to any national climate change policy.
NOW THEREFORE, I, Rod Blagojevich, Governor of the State of Illinois, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the State of Illinois do hereby order:
- Creation of the Illinois Climate Change Advisory Group
- There is created the Illinois Climate Change Advisory Group (“the Advisory Group”). The purpose of the Advisory Group is to provide recommendations to the Office of the Governor regarding climate change policy.
- The Advisory Group shall consist of individuals appointed by the Governor and shall be chaired by the Director of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. The Advisory Group will include representatives from business, labor unions, environmental groups, agriculture, the energy sector, as well as scientists and economists from throughout Illinois.
- Members of the Advisory Group shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor and shall meet regularly to accomplish the goals of the Advisory Group. The members shall serve without compensation. The chairperson may convene the Advisory Group at any time.
- A vacancy in the membership of the Advisory Group shall not impair the right of a quorum to exercise all the rights and perform all the duties of the Advisory Group. A majority of Advisory Group members then appointed constitutes a quorum. A majority vote of the quorum is required for a Advisory Group decision.
- The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency shall provide necessary staff assistance to the Advisory Group.
- Duties of the Illinois Climate Change Advisory Group
- The Advisory Group shall, after fully considering the full range of policies and strategies regarding climate change, present proposals to the Governor to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions.
- The Advisory Group shall present its findings and recommendations, including an inventory of existing and planned actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to the Governor by June 30, 2007.
- Membership in the Chicago Climate Exchange
It is the intent for the State of Illinois to join Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), a greenhouse gas emissions registry, reduction and trading system, to reduce emissions from governmental activities by 6% by 2010. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency shall review all terms associated with joining the CCX and shall make a recommendation to the Governor regarding the terms of membership in the CCX. Membership in the CCX will allow the State to lead by example in achieving meaningful reductions in its own greenhouse gas emissions associated with State government operations as well as gain valuable experience in participating in a market-based mechanism for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving the efficiency of state government operations.
- Reporting Requirements
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency shall produce an annual report to the Governor at the end of each fiscal year tracking statewide greenhouse gas emissions in Illinois and forecasted trends. Additionally, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency shall annually document the greenhouse gas emissions of State government, and track progress towards meeting the CCX reduction targets.
This Executive Order shall take effect immediately upon filing with the Secretary of State.
Rod R. Blagojevich, Governor
Issued by Governor: October 5, 2006
Filed with Secretary of State: October 5, 2006