Gov. Roy Cooper signs executive order laying out plan for zero-emissions North Carolina
Governor Roy Cooper issued today: Executive Order No. 246, affirming North Carolina’s commitment to a clean energy economy and directing the next steps in the state’s plan to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and create economic opportunities for North Carolina’s citizens in the statewide, especially in underserved communities.
“Transforming North Carolina to a clean energy and more equitable economy will provide good jobs and a healthy environment for generations of families in our state. To achieve our goals, we must be clear, intentional and determined,” said Governor Cooper. have made tremendous strides in developing a clean energy plan tailored to our state’s unique challenges and opportunities and setting law-enforced carbon reduction targets for utilities.This order will assess our progress in reducing of climate pollution and direct ways to curb environmental injustices, increase clean transportation options and build more resilient communities in North Carolina.
executive order no. 246 updates North Carolina’s economy-wide carbon reduction emissions targets to align with climate science, reduce pollution, create good jobs and protect communities. The Order reinforces North Carolina’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, raise its statewide target to a 50% reduction from 2005 levels by 2030, and achieve a net achieve zero greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve these goals, Order directs the governor’s administration to update a national greenhouse gas inventory to measure current levels of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as analyze potential routes to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
executive order no. 246 is also taking steps to encourage and prepare for North Carolina’s transition to a clean transportation future. The decision calls for an increase in the number of registered zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) to at least 1,250,000 by 2030 and to 50% of new vehicle sales in North Carolina by 2030. It also directs the North Carolina Department of Transportation to develop a clean transportation plan in North Carolina to decarbonize the transportation sector by reducing vehicle miles traveled, increasing zero-emission cars, trucks, and buses, and other strategies.
The Order underlines the importance of emphasizing environmental justice and fairness in the transition of the state to a clean economy. It directs cabinet bodies to consider environmental justice when taking actions related to climate change, resilience and clean energy and to identify a leadership role for environmental justice to serve as a focal point for the agency’s efforts in the field. of environmental justice. In addition, each government agency will develop a public participation plan to improve communication and transparency with the public in government decision-making, especially with disadvantaged communities. The decision also instructs government agencies to prioritize environmental justice, clean economy and climate in budgetary decisions and to engage advocates and stakeholders in identifying additional executive measures to promote an equitable clean economy.
To strengthen North Carolina’s workforce and create good jobs in the clean energy economy, the North Carolina Climate Change Interagency Council will identify strategies to increase diversity in industries and occupations essential to tackling climate change in North Carolina. . The administration will work with the North Carolina Business Committee for Education and other stakeholders to expand youth clean energy apprenticeship programs that prepare graduates for high-paying careers in the clean energy economy, with an emphasis on educational institutions serving underrepresented communities.
The executive order builds on the governor’s previous actions to support clean energy, climate change and environmental justice. In 2021, the Governor signed House Bill 951, a bipartisan bill requiring the North Carolina Utilities Commission to take necessary steps for state utilities to reduce carbon emissions by 70% by 2030 from 2005 levels and by 2050. achieve carbon neutrality.
The Governor also signed executive order no. 80, affirming North Carolina’s commitment to tackling climate change, executive order no. 143, creation of the Andrea Harris Social, Economic, Environmental and Health Equity Task Force to address long-term disparities and executive order no. 218, highlighting North Carolina’s commitment to offshore wind. These actions will make North Carolina less dependent on fossil fuels, bring new high-paying jobs to the state and help remedy disproportionate environmental, economic and health impacts on people of color, low-income communities and Indigenous communities.
Read the Executive order.
News report from the office of Gov. Roy Cooper