U.S. Lags Behind G8 Nations in Growing Clean Energy Economy, Reducing Emissions

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Joe Pouliot, WWF
joe.pouliot@wwfus.org
(202) 476-9919

U.S. Lags Behind G8 Nations in Growing Clean Energy Economy, Reducing Emissions

G8 Climate Scorecard Shows U.S. Has Much Catching Up To Do, says WWF

WASHINGTON - As Congress debates landmark energy and climate legislation, a new
analysis released today finds the United States lags far behind most
other G8 nations in building a clean energy economy and cutting
greenhouse gas pollution.

The G8 Climate Scorecard, released by
World Wildlife Fund and global financial services company Allianz SE,
comes one week before heads of state gather in Italy for the 2009 G8
summit.

“During debate on the energy and climate bill in the
House of Representatives last Friday, opponents of the legislation
demanded that other countries first step up to the plate,” said WWF
President and CEO Carter Roberts. “The truth is that not only has much
of the rest of the world already been at the plate, they’re several
innings into the game and we’re only now emerging from the dugout.

“For
too long, the U.S. has resisted action while other nations have begun
the transition to a clean energy economy. Other nations have
dramatically cut greenhouse gas pollution, set national targets, ramped
up investments in energy technology and set regulatory frameworks to
spark innovation in key sectors. And now other countries dominate
markets in sustainable energy and technology.

“It is time for the
U.S. to get into the game and make up for lost time. Passage of the
American Clean Energy and Security Act by the House on Friday took us a
big step forward. We need the Senate to pass the bill, get it to the
President before Copenhagen and give us the means to challenge other
countries to work with us in solving this global problem,” Roberts said.

The
annual G8 Climate Scorecard analyzes the policies of the G8 countries
along a variety of metrics, including reduction (or growth) of
greenhouse gas emissions since 1990, percentage of the country’s energy
portfolio that is derived from renewable sources, and investments in
clean energy technology.

In the 2009 ranking, the U.S. resides in
seventh place, just ahead of Canada and behind Russia – an improvement
over previous years when it was typically ranked last. The bump this
year is largely due to progress in Congress toward passing
comprehensive energy and climate legislation, clean energy investments
in the economic stimulus package, and strong leadership by President
Obama on climate change, including his efforts to strengthen vehicle
fuel economy and lighting efficiency standards.

Ranking highest
in the analysis are Germany, the United Kingdom and France, each of
which has slashed it greenhouse gas emissions and has already met its
targets under the Kyoto Protocol. By comparison, U.S. emissions have
risen substantially, increasing by about 15 percent since 1990. The
European nations have also made far greater progress than the U.S. in
growing their clean energy sectors.

Allianz, a global financial
services company, is sensitive to the economic threat climate change
poses to communities around the world. Dr. Joachim Faber, a board
member of Allianz SE, said, “A low carbon future holds growth potential
for G8 countries as well as for emerging nations. Future investments
and product development therefore require a sustainable political
framework.”

NOTE TO EDITORS:
The full report on the G8 Climate Scorecard, an executive summary and high-resolution graphics are available online: http://www.worldwildlife.org/climate/policy/G8-climate-scorecards.html.

###

The largest multinational conservation organization in the world, WWF works in 100 countries and is supported by 1.2 million members in the United States and close to 5 million globally. WWF's unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to global, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature.

Share This Article

More in: