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Governor Crist Announces Baseline Measurement for State Government Greenhouse Gas Emissions


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 14, 2008

CONTACT: Governor's Press Office, (850) 488-5394

Cathy Schroeder, DMS, (850) 921-5266

Sarah Williams, DEP, (850) 245-2112

Governor Crist Announces Baseline Measurement for
State Government Greenhouse Gas Emissions

~ State government to target greenhouse gas reductions ~

TALLAHASSEE - Governor Charlie Crist today released Florida's first comprehensive assessment of greenhouse gas emissions produced by state government. The study, Florida State Government Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scorecard, identifies the amount of greenhouse gases produced by state agencies during the 2006-07 fiscal year. The data serves as the baseline to track greenhouse gas emissions so state government can make state buildings and vehicles more energy efficient, as outlined in Governor Crist's Executive Order 07-126.

"Reducing state government's greenhouse gas emissions will reduce energy costs and wisely use taxpayer dollars," said Governor Crist. "Today, we are leading by example and marking our starting point for reduced energy use and increased accountability as good stewards of our natural resources."

Findings report that state agencies produced almost 899,107 metric tons of carbon dioxide in the 2006-07 fiscal year, the equivalent of emissions from 194,612 passenger cars or 115,418 homes. The study reports emissions data for each individual state agency buildings as well as vehicle emissions.

In his executive order, Governor Crist set the greenhouse gas reduction targets of 10 percent from current levels by 2012, 25 percent from current levels by 2017, and 40 percent from current levels by 2025. With this baseline data, state agencies and water management districts will identify areas to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and track these reductions.

"As the state's landlord we have a huge opportunity to take this data and see what incremental improvements we should make to improve the efficiency of our real estate," said Department of Management Services Secretary Linda H. South. "Governor Crist's leadership in this important endeavor will make us better stewards of the state's precious resources."

Executive order 07-126 is one of three executive orders signed by Governor Crist at the Serve to Preserve Summit on Global Climate Change in July 2007. The order charges state government to "lead by example" through specific actions, including developing a climate-friendly preferred products list for cleaning supplies and strengthening existing public-private partnerships such as the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Green Lodging Program. Another Executive Order establishes the 21-member Governor's Action Team on Energy and Climate Change, a diverse group of stakeholders that is developing a plan for achieving targets for statewide greenhouse gas reductions, including policy recommendations and changes to existing law.

"Meeting Florida's growing needs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and maintaining our quality of life is one of the most important and challenging issues we face today," said Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Michael W. Sole. "I am confident that the actions we are taking now to identify and reduce emissions, coupled with the recommendations from the Governor's Action Team, will help diversify our energy portfolio and lessen the potential for environmental and economic impacts."

The Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Management Services produced the study by determining the level of greenhouse gas emissions using the GHG Protocol Initiative methodology for corporate greenhouse gas accounting. Developed by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, this methodology is the most widely used framework globally for measuring greenhouse gas emissions.

Last summer, Governor Charlie Crist signed a set of executive orders to reduce Florida's greenhouse gases emissions, increase energy efficiency, and remove market barriers for renewable energy technologies such as solar and wind energy. In the months since the executive orders were signed, Florida has stepped onto the world stage as a major marketplace for advanced energy technologies. Just two weeks ago, the Governor announced a $200 million energy and economic development budget recommendation that builds on the policy framework of the Governor's executive orders, focusing on increasing energy efficiency, stimulating development of renewable sources of energy, and using markets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

For more information about Governor Crist's actions to address global climate change, or to download a copy of the report, visit MyFloridaClimate.com.

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