Climate change is rapidly accelerating in California, state report says
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(CNN) — As of August 2016, California is on pace to reach its goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 1990 levels by 2045.
That’s on track to meet or exceed the international goal of keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius. While California has made significant reductions in its carbon footprint, it’s clear that it is not enough to meet its clean energy goals, according to a draft state government report presented to lawmakers this week.
To meet its pledge, California will need to see “a sustained increase in renewable energy generation and a sustained decrease in the usage of fossil fuels,” said the draft report, which was presented to the California State Assembly by California Department of Water Resources (DWR) Director Mark Cowin without giving out the exact scope of the goal.
The state was given two years — until 2020 — to get the reductions down. And with “the current trajectory” of emissions, the state could not meet its goal “within a 12-month period,” says the report.
While a small part of the state’s emissions reductions have come from the new energy needed to deal with a warming climate, the bulk of the reductions have come from measures to cut carbon emissions from cars, trucks and airplanes, said the report.
“The fact that these two areas are not meeting their own commitments in a timely manner is a concern to us and to the board and to the administration,” says the report.
According to the report, an estimated 28% of California’s carbon emissions come from buildings and other structures, with the rest coming from industrial and commercial energy use.
The state has also made great strides in cutting