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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

2014 U.S. Climate Action Report


Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
September 26, 2013

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Under President Obama, the United States has made significant progress in reducing carbon pollution. During 2009-2011, average U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell to the lowest level for any three-year period since 1994-1996. The 2014 Climate Action Report outlines how existing and planned U.S. action on climate change puts the United States on a path to reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in the range of 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.

The 2014 U.S. Climate Action Report fulfills a commitment under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to publish every four years a National Communication projecting domestic greenhouse gas emissions assuming existing climate policies and measures.

In addition, for the first time, the Climate Action Report is accompanied by a Biennial Report that outlines how additional planned climate actions will further reduce greenhouse gas emissions trends through 2020. The U.S. led efforts to establish biennial reporting requirements for all countries in order to increase transparency and promote accountability.

The 2014 Climate Action Report is in draft form and open for public comment from September 26 to October 24.

Highlights from the 2014 U.S. Climate Action Report:

  • The United States made significant progress during President Obama’s first term in reducing emissions. This includes doubling electricity generation from wind and solar, establishing new fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks, and promoting efficiency in our homes and businesses.
     
  • Maintaining our progress requires further action. Through the President’s Climate Action Plan, the U.S. will take a multi-faceted, multi-sector approach to find opportunities across the economy to enhance efficiency and reduce harmful pollution.
     
  • The Climate Action Report indicates that the goal to reduce emissions in the range of 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 is both ambitious and achievable through a range of actions across the economy. The Climate Action Plan significantly enhances U.S. domestic efforts to address climate change by:
  • Putting in place new rules to cut carbon pollution from the power sector;
  •  Enhancing action on energy efficiency and clean energy technologies; and,
  • Reducing methane (CH4) and hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) emissions.
     
  • The United States is preparing for the impacts of climate change. The Obama Administration is working to strengthen America’s resilience to the effects of climate change, which are already being felt across the country. States and communities are also taking steps to protect themselves by improving building codes, adjusting the way they manage natural resources, investing in more resilient infrastructure, and planning for rapid recovery from extreme weather events.

About the 2014 U.S. Climate Action Report

The draft U.S. Climate Action Report contains two documents, the first-ever U.S. Biennial Report and the quadrennial National Communication. Together these documents:

  • Explain how U.S. social and economic circumstances affect U.S. greenhouse gas emission levels;
     
  • Summarize U.S. greenhouse gas emission trends from 1990 through 2011;
     
  • Identify existing and planned U.S. policies and measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions;
     
  • Indicate estimated future trends for U.S. greenhouse gas emissions under both existing and planned climate policies and measures;
     
  •  Outline the potential impacts of climate change on the United States and the preparedness and resilience measures the Nation is taking to address those impacts;
     
  • Provide information on climate-related financial resources and technology diffusion; and
     
  • Detail U.S. research and systematic observation efforts and describe U.S. climate education, training, and outreach initiatives.



PRN: 2013/1187



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