In 2010, our nation regrettably did not enact meaningful climate legislation, we did not institute a price for emitting carbon dioxide, nor did we enact a national renewable energy~electricity standard -- all of which are critical to our future success and sustainability. But the United States did make some incremental progress which is worth noting, protecting and building on in 2011.
Vital tax incentives were extended for renewable energy development (see the NYTimes story below).
The EPA very importantly just announced its intention to carefully regulate (under the clean Air Act) the emissions of carbon dioxide for power plants and refineries which are the largest emitters of this greenhouse gas (see Washington Times story below).
The international Framework Convention on Climate Change during its annual conference held this year at Cancun, Mexico (while not announcing any major, direly needed breakthroughs) did take some pragmatic and forward moving steps to address human induced climate change (see PEW's summary conference summary below).
And, not to ever be underestimated, our civil society - reflected by individuals, families, schools, small businesses, non-governmental organizations, corporations and many others - have consistently been demonstrating leadership to move our nation in a cleaner and more innovative direction.
Let us in 2011 bear down, protect these and other advancements, extend on them and really start digging deeper in order to be the generation who took responsibility and built up our nation as the Beacon of Light for climate and clean energy stewardship.
To a brave and wise New Year!