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Climate Change 
PCC > Priorities > Climate Action


Rising levels of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases have warmed the earth and are already causing wide-ranging impacts, from rising sea levels to melting snow and ice to more drought and floods. These changes are expected to increase in frequency and intensity, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Extreme events, disasters and long-term climatic changes will likely significantly impact human health, our forests, agriculture, freshwater supplies, coastlines and other natural resources that are vital to the economy and the environment along the Pacific Coast. How the Pacific Coastal region responds to the issue of global warming will shape the future of not just the region's environment, but also its economy, its communities, and its way of life. 

By working collaboratively to shape policy and facilitate aggressive action on climate change, the Pacific coastal region will lead the world in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and reducing risks of creating impacts beyond our ability to respond and adapt.  While no individual action is too small to matter, it will take the full engagement of government, individuals, business, First Nations and Tribes, environmental advocates, and the academic and scientific communities to turn down the heat.

Regional Best Practices:

  • The Climate Action Plan is British Columbia’s roadmap to a new, prosperous, green economy for the province. It outlines strategies and initiatives to take B.C. approximately 73% towards meeting the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 33% by 2020, including North America's first revenue-neutral carbon tax.
  •  AB 32, the landmark California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, established a comprehensive program of regulatory and market mechanisms to achieve  quantifiable, cost-effective reductions of GHG. Visit California’s Climate Change Portal for more information.
  • In 2007, Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski signed House Bill 3543, setting forth agressive greenhouse gas reduction targets of 75% below 1990 levels by 2020. The bill also established a Global Warming Commission and the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute in the Oregon University System. 
  • Since 2007, Washington Governor Gregoire signed into law several climate change bills and issued several executive orders establishing a policy framework to: achieve statewide greenhouse gas limits; reduce emissions from transportation, electricity, building, and state government operation; create green economy jobs; and prepare the state in addressing and adapting to the impacts of climate change. See Washington's Climate Change Policy Framework for more information.
  • The West Coast Governors Alliance on Ocean Health  and federal partners commissioned the National Research Council to provide regional projections and uncertainties of sea level rise along the West Coast in the years 2030, 2050, and 2100.  The study is expected to be released in the spring of 2012 and will provide important assistance to state and local governments in making decisions on policy, management, infrastructure investments and adaptation strategies.


The effects of climate change can already be seen and felt throughout the region. 


 News From the Region

March 26, 2014 - B.C. Congratulates Mexico, France for Putting Price on Carbon
VANCOUVER – Environment Minister Mary Polak today congratulated Mexico and France at GLOBE 2014 for putting a price on carbon

December 18, 2013: Action on Ocean Acidification
Further to the Pacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Energy they signed on October 28, 2013, the leaders of British Columbia, California, Oregon and Washington have sent the following joint letter to President Obama and Prime Minister Harper seeking enhanced federal coordination, monitoring, and research support to address ocean acidification on the Pacific Coast of North America.

October 28, 2013: British Columbia, California, Oregon, and Washington join forces to combat climate change
SAN FRANCISCO - The leaders of British Columbia, California, Oregon and Washington signed the Pacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Energy today committing their governments, and a region that represents the world’s fifth largest economy, to a comprehensive and far-reaching strategic alignment to combat climate change and promote clean energy.

August 27, 2013: California Ocean Protection Council Announces West Coast Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia Science Panel
SACRAMENTO -- The California Natural Resources Agency, on behalf of the California Ocean Protection Council (OPC), today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state of Oregon to jointly sponsor a high-level science panel to help address the issue of ocean acidification and hypoxia.... The science panel consists of a team of 20 experts from California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia...

June 27, 2013: Premier welcomes President Obama’s strategy to combat climate change
VICTORIA – Premier Christy Clark today issued the following statement in response to President Barack Obama’s strategy to combat climate change:

June 25, 2013: Governor Brown Issues Statement on President Obama's Action on Climate Change
SACRAMENTO - Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today issued the following statement on President Obama’s climate change plan:

June 25, 2013: Statement from Gov. Inslee on President Obama’s plan to cut carbon pollution
OLYMPIA - Every day Americans see the impacts of climate change in increasing droughts, wildfires, dangerous storms, ocean acidification, and more.

June 25, 2013: Governor Kitzhaber’s 10-Year Energy Action Plan moves forward
Salem, OR — As part of his efforts to shape Oregon’s energy future, today Governor Kitzhaber held a ceremonial bill signing of legislation that advances key energy and jobs policies outlined in Oregon’s 10-Year Energy Action Plan.“I also want to applaud President Obama for his effort to address climate change at the national level,” said Governor Kitzhaber. “