2023 State Climate Progress: Our Full List of Enacted Policies and Trends

Photo Illustration by Greg Casto and Amanda Pontillo, Climate XChange. Gavel photo by: Tingey Injury Law Firm on Unsplash. Map illustration by Amanda Pontillo.

Contributing Staff

Author

Ruby Wincele ǀ Policy & Research Manager

Editors

Greg Casto ǀ Senior Communications Associate
Amanda Pontillo ǀ Communications Director & Operations Lead
Jonah Kurman-Faber ǀ Policy & Research Director

The Policy Progress section of our biweekly newsletter shares newly enacted state climate policies, including legislation and executive branch regulations. Below is an archive of our Policy Progress updates from 2023 and four trends we’ve seen from the policies states are enacting.

Interested in reading our Policy Progress updates throughout the year? Sign up for our biweekly newsletter!

2023 Climate Policy Trends

Where These Policies Have Passed

2. Electric Vehicle Sales Requirements

In 2023, seven states adopted Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II), the second version of a California law that requires a progressively increasing percentage of passenger vehicle sales to be electric (100 percent by 2035), as well as more stringent emissions standards for vehicles utilizing gasoline. Two other states have drafted ACC II regulations under consideration.

Some states have also made progress on versions of California’s Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) policy, which requires increasing sales requirements of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in the state.

Where These Policies Have Passed

3. New Mechanisms to Secure Federal Funding

The Inflation Reduction Act (2022) and Investment Infrastructure and Jobs Act (2021) made billions of dollars available for state and local climate policy solutions. Still, states sometimes need to take additional steps to access this crucial federal funding, such as setting up new green banks and state matching funds. Green banks are quasi-governmental financial institutions that secure funding for clean energy projects, which can face obstacles obtaining traditional loans . Matching funds are sometimes required for states to be eligible for certain types of federal funding.

Where These Policies Have Passed

4. Environmental Justice Policy Updates

The effects of climate change and pollution are felt by some communities more than others, and it’s vital that vulnerable and disadvantaged communities play a central role in crafting policy solutions. This year, states have:

  • Established environmental justice (EJ) community definitions, which are used to identify communities experiencing pollution and socioeconomic vulnerabilities, 
  • Released new EJ mapping tools, which visualize EJ communities and other key social, economic, and environmental data,, and
  • Passed cumulative impacts legislation, which can deny permitting approval for projects that would increase the total amount of pollution in EJ communities.

    Where These Policies Have Passed

    2023 Policy Progress Updates

    Click on a state to view their 2023 Policy Progress organized chronologically. This list is not exhaustive, but represents many of the major steps forward taken by states this year. If a state is not listed below, visit our State Climate Policy Dashboard Tracker to learn more about its policy landscape.

    Arizona

    July 28, 2023

    • Arizona became the latest state to join the U.S. Climate Alliance, a coalition of governors who have pledged to collectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26–28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025, at least 50–52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, and achieve net-zero emissions no later than 2050.

    California

    April 7, 2023

    • The U.S. EPA will allow California’s Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) rule to move forward, which, starting in 2024, requires an increasing percentage of truck sales to be zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) through 2035. Under the ACT, by 2035, ZEVs will need to represent 55 percent of Class 2b-3 truck sales, 75 percent of Class 4-8 straight truck sales, and 40 percent of class 7-8 tractor sales. Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington, and Vermont plan to adopt the new rules as well.

    May 5, 2023

    • Last week, California passed two ambitious rules aimed at eliminating emissions from trains and medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. On April 27th, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) approved the In-Use Locomotive Regulation targets emissions from trains when operating in the state. The rule sets a 30-minute idling limit in 2024, and bans in-state operation of locomotives older than 23 years old by 2030. Switch, industrial, and passenger locomotives built in 2030 or after will be required to operate in zero-emissions configurations while in California, and in 2035 for freight lines.
    • The following day, CARB approved the Advanced Clean Fleets (ACF) rule to accelerate the transition to zero-emission trucks and buses. ACF establishes the first mandate to end the sale of combustion trucks by 2036, requiring an increasing percentage of zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicle sales each year based on vehicle type, and requires that all fleets must be emissions-free by 2042. Find more information on the timeline for each vehicle type here.

    September 22, 2023

    • In August, California amended the state’s green building code, requiring developers to limit the amount of embodied carbon in new and remodeled large commercial buildings starting in July 2024. This nation-leading code aims to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from building materials such as concrete, steel, insulation, and wood.

    October 20, 2023

    • On October 7th, California Governor Newsom signed a pair of laws that will require major corporations to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and financial risks related to climate change. The first law, known as the “Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act” (SB 253), requires large companies that operate in California and make more than $1 billion annually to disclose their direct and indirect emissions to the state starting in 2026 and 2027, respectively. The second law approved last week, SB 261, requires companies making more than $500 million annually to disclose what financial risks climate change poses to their businesses and how they plan to address those risks starting in 2026.
    • Other climate and energy bills recently signed by Newsom include:
      • SB 410, also called the “Powering Up Californians Act”, directs the California Public Utilities Commission to set average and target time periods for grid connections and upgrades.
      • AB 1373 creates a central procurement process for California state agencies to acquire clean energy.
      • SB 48, the “Building Energy Savings Act,” directs the Energy Commission to develop a strategy to improve energy and water efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in commercial buildings larger than 50,000 square feet.
      • SB 49 instructs state agencies to evaluate the potential for solar panels, battery storage, and transmission along highways.
      • AB 3, called the “Offshore Wind and Jobs Act,” requires state officials to develop a plan to prepare California’s ports for offshore wind power.
      • AB 579 requires all newly purchased or contracted school buses to be zero-emission starting in 2035.
      • AB 631 would ensure that California “has 21st century enforcement tools to protect communities from oil and gas operations that violate the law and endanger both public health and the environment.”
      • AB 1167, the “Orphaned Well Prevention Act,” prohibits the sale of an oil well unless the new owner can pay to plug and fully remediate it so older oil wells aren’t abandoned.
      • SB 704 makes it harder for proposed oil and gas developments, including drilling and refining operations, along the Pacific coast to get approved, since they will be subject to policies that protect California’s ocean and coast.

    Colorado

    May 5, 2023

    • On April 21st, Colorado adopted the Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) and Low-Nitrogen Oxides (Low-NOx) rules to reduce heavy-duty transportation pollution in the state. Beginning in model year (MY) 2027, the ACT rules set a sales standard for manufacturers to make more zero-emission trucksavailable in Colorado, and the percentage of sales grows incrementally through model year 2035. The Low-NOx rule sets more stringent air pollution emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles, beginning in MY 2027 as well, and will reduce nitrogen oxide emissions for new vehicles by 90 percent compared to the current standard.

    May 19, 2023

    • Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed a package of climate bills into law on May 11th, including:
      • SB23-016Establishes new climate targets, requiring economy-wide emissions cuts of at least 65 percent by 2035, 75 percent by 2040, 90 percent by 2045 (all below 2005 levels) and strengthens the state’s goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. 
      • HB23-1272Creates and extends tax incentive programsfocused on promoting electric bicycle, car, and truck purchases; geothermal energy; heat pump technology; and industrial clean energy. Overall the bill creates around $200 million in tax incentives over the next decade.
      • SB23-291Prohibits investor-owned utilities (IOUs) from charging ratepayers for (1) membership dues in trade associations, (2) lobbying expenses, or (3) any other activities influencing legislation, ballot measures, and other regulatory actions. The law also prevents utilities from spending ratepayer money on political advertising or any messaging intended to boost the utility’s brand.

    June 2, 2023

    • Colorado Governor Polis signed SB23-092 into law, which requires the Department of Agriculture (CDA) to study the greenhouse gas mitigation and carbon sequestration potential of soil health management practices and a carbon offset program. The law also requires an existing CDA grant program to now include the use or study of agrivoltaics.

    July 28, 2023

    • Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission approved guidelines for the measurement and verification of oil and gas methane emissions, becoming the latest state to set stricter standards for tracking the potent greenhouse gas. Oil and gas operators will be required to obtain independent verification of their emissions data.

    September 8, 2023

    • On August 17th, the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission voted 6-1 to adopt rules enacting a building performance standard for large buildings. The rules aim to cut building emissions seven percent below 2021 levels by 2026 and 20 percent by 2030, as required by legislation passed in 2021.
    • On August 21st, Governor Polis issued an executive order (D 2023 014) that establishes ten strategic growth goals for the state. The order aims to limit urban sprawl, promote mass transit, and protect air, water, and green spaces while boosting efficient, affordable housing in Colorado.

    November 3, 2023

    • Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission extended the state’s Clean Cars standard through 2032, requiring that 82 percent of new vehicles sold that year are electric vehicles (EVs). The Clean Cars standard is modeled after California’s Advanced Clean Cars II regulations, but stops short of the 100 percent EV sales mandate in 2035 California and six other states have adopted so far.

    Connecticut

    June 30, 2023

    • Following Colorado, Connecticut became the second state to enact legislation (SB 7) to prohibit utilities from using money from customers’ bills to pay for political activities, including lobbying and trade association dues. Utilities are required to file annual disclosures to the Public Utility Regulatory Authority (PURA) including itemized lists of expenditures that they made on political influence activities. The law advances the state’s efforts toward performance-based ratemaking that would set utilities’ profits according to their success in meeting goals for reliability and affordability, rather than their capital expenditures. The bill also increases transparency of rate case settlements and broadens the PURA’s ability to consider affordability in setting rates.
    • With the state’s 2023 legislative session over, the following bills have also been enacted into law so far:
      • SB 1147 gives the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and the state’s Siting Council the ability to deny a permit for new facilities based on the “cumulative impact” of environmental and public health stressors that already exist in environmental justice communities.
      • SB 904 requires that, by 2030, the state establishes transportation emissions reduction targets and develops a plan to meet the targets, which includes recommendations for legislation needed to implement such targets.
      • HB 6479 requires DEEP to maximize the state’s receipt of federal funds for climate resiliency projects undertaken by the state and municipalities.
      • HB 6354 creates a Green Jobs Corp Program.
      • HB 6725 funds the development of farmland restoration and climate resiliency plans.

     

    October 6, 2023

    • Connecticut released its finalized Environmental Justice Mapping Tool, which incorporates more than 50 different data sets to show which census tracts in the state are most at risk from pollution exposure, socioeconomic impacts, and health disparities. These indicators are mapped across the state and combined into an overall Environmental Justice Index Score for each community.
    • On October 3rd, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut signed a first-of-its-kind agreement to coordinate on offshore wind projects. The “Offshore Wind Multi-State Memorandum of Understanding” calls for the three states to jointly consider bids from offshore wind developers. The states could collectively issue a solicitation for as much as 6,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity, and aim to lower project costs while providing benefits to all three states.

    December 1, 2023

    • Connecticut Governor Lamont and the Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP) withdrew proposed regulations to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Cars II and Advanced Clean Trucks(ACT) from consideration by the Legislative Regulation Review Committee (LRRC).

    Delaware

    April 7, 2023

    • The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) recently released its first version of an environmental justice (EJ) mapping tool, called the EJ Area Viewer, which will be used to identify disproportionately impacted by environmental issues and future agency decisions.

    August 11, 2023

    • On August 3rd, Delaware Governor Carney signed seven pieces of climate legislation that strengthen the state’s climate targets, increase electric vehicle and renewable energy adoption, and update building codes.
    • The Delaware Climate Change Solutions Act (HB 99) establishes new climate targets, requiring the state to reduce emissions by 50 percent by 2030 and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. State agencies must develop and implement a climate action plan to meet these targets every five years, the first of which is due by November 15, 2025. It also requires state agencies to consider climate change in their decision-making, rulemaking, and procurement.
    • HB 10 sets targets for purchasing electric school buses, starting at five percent of annual school bus purchases in fiscal year (FY) 2025, increasing five percent annually through FY 2030 to reach 30 percent of bus purchases.
    • HB 11 ensures new large commercial buildings are solar-ready.
    • HB 12 codifies the state’s Electric Vehicle Rebate Program, offering a $2,500 rebate for new and used electric vehicles and $1,000 for new and used plug-in hybrids.
    • SS1 for SB 103 requires that newly constructed single-family homes have EV capable parking, and that multi-family residential buildings include EV capable parking and EV charging infrastructure.
    • SB 170 directs the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control to study offshore wind with neighboring states and PJM.
    • SS 1 for SB 7 expands the Delaware State Energy Office’s responsibilities.

    Hawaii

    July 14, 2023

    • Hawaii Governor Green signed a package of climate and energy bills into law on July 5th, including:
      • SB 1024 — Establishes a goal of net-zero transportation emissions by 2045 and creates a working group to develop strategies and recommendations to achieve the goal.
      • SB 1534 — Replaces the gas tax with a mileage-based road usage charge for electric vehicles beginning July 1, 2025.
      • SB 691 — Authorizes the State Energy Officer to adopt rules to enforce or amend minimum efficiency standards for certain products.
      • HB 192Phases out fluorescent light bulbs and requires LEDs starting in 2025.

    Hawaii

    June 16, 2023

    • Illinois’ “Electric Vehicle Charging Act” (SB 40) became law on June 9th. The new law requires that all new residential buildings with designated parking spaces have EV charging capabilities. Each residential unit in a single-unit or multi-unit building that has designated parking would be required to have at least one parking space that is “EV-capable.”

    August 11, 2023

    • Illinois Governor Pritzker signed HB 2487 into law on July 28th, creating a Justice40 Oversight Committee responsible for making recommendations on how the state can advance environmental justice and meet the federal Justice40 Initiative’s requirements. Pritzker also signed SB 2368, which requires climate resilient building codes.

    Kansas

    September 22, 2023

    • Kansas Governor Kelly launched a $200 million Build Kansas Fund to provide matching funds for entities applying to Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) programs that require non-federal matches. The fund aims to accelerate IIJA-funded projects in Kansas, including water, transportation, energy, cybersecurity, and broadband projects through fiscal year 2027.

    Kentucky

    November 17, 2023

    • Kentucky regulators approved a 900 percent increase in the solar and battery storage plan from the state’s largest utility. The state’s solar capacity is currently 42nd in the nation.
    • State utilities also plan to shut down two coal-fired power plants and a gas-fired plant totaling 647MW of capacity, and build a gas-fired plant to offset the closures.

    Louisiana

    November 3, 2023

    • The Louisiana Department of Natural Resources finalized new rules to help reduce the number of orphaned oil and gas wells throughout the state. The new regulation includes incentives for operators to plug their non-productive wells and increases fees on wells that have been inactive and unplugged for five or more years. The regulation also reduces fees for operators who plug 10 or more wells in a year. With the new regulation, Louisiana is now eligible for up to $70 million more in federal funding to plug orphaned wells.

    November 17, 2023

    Maine

    June 30, 2023

    • Joining Colorado and Connecticut, Maine also adopted a law (LD 325) to prohibit investor-owned utilities (IOUs) from charging customers for costs related to political activities. Other recently enacted legislation includes:
      • LD 542 requires the PUC to submit a report investigating time-of-use rate options by January 15, 2024.
      • LD 1559 expands membership of the Public Transit Advisory Council, and directs the Council to report and make recommendations on the level of public transportation services and infrastructure in each geographic region.

    August 11, 2023

    • Maine adopted legislation (LD 1895) to advance offshore wind in the state, calling for the state to procure three gigawatts of offshore wind power by 2040. Governor Mills signed a revised version on July 27th, after vetoing an earlier bill version over concerns about labor provisions. The revised standards prioritize jobs for Maine residents, ban the use of independent contractors and temp staffing agencies, and require that all work happen at collectively bargained rates.

    Maryland

    March 20, 2023

    • On March 13, Maryland became the latest state to announce its intention to adopt the ACC II rules, requiring 100 percent of new car and light-duty truck in-state sales to be zero-emission vehicles by 2035. Governor Wes Moore’s announcement came after the state’s Air Quality Control Advisory Council voted in favor of enacting the ACC II standards, and the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) will finalize the regulations to go into effect in September 2023.

    May 5, 2023

    • Maryland’s 2023 legislative session ended on April 10th, sending more than 20 climate and environmental bills to the Governor’s desk. So far, Governor Wes Moore has signed three bills into law:
      • HB 0230/SB 0224, Clean Trucks Act — Requires the Department of the Environment to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) regulations by the end of 2023, establishing requirements for the sale of new zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in the state.
      • SB0781, Promoting Offshore Wind Energy Resources Act — Known as the POWER Act, the legislation sets a nonbinding goal of 8.5 gigawatts of offshore wind capacity by 2031.
      • HB 0550, Clean Transportation and Energy Act — Extends the Electric Vehicle Recharging Equipment Program through fiscal year 2026 and increases funding from $1.8 million to $2.5 million annually, and allows the Medium-Duty and Heavy-Duty Zero-Emission Vehicle Grant Program to cover up to 75 percent of vehicle costs, up from 20 percent established in the Clean Cars Act of 2022.

    May 19, 2023

    • This month, Maryland Governor Wes Moore signed the following bills into law:
      • HB 0169Establishes annual energy savings for low-income residential units for the 2024-2026 EmPOWER cycle, starting at 0.53 percent in 2024 and increasing to 1.0 percent in 2026.
      • HB0009Requires equity to be incorporated into state transportation plans, goals, and reports. It also requires the Maryland Transit Administration to develop transit equity analysis policies and guidelines, which will be used to assess future transit projects.
      • HB0012Creates the “Transit-Oriented Development Capital Grant and Revolving Loan Fund” and ensures at least $5 million annually is available in the Fund to plan and implement transit-oriented development projects.

    July 14, 2023

    • On June 30th, the Maryland Department of the Environment released its draft Maryland Climate Pathway report that demonstrates how the state can meet its ambitious climate goals of a 60 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2031 and a net-zero economy by 2045. In addition to implementing Maryland’s existing laws and regulations, some of the major strategies to achieve these reductions include:
      • Increasing the renewable portfolio standard (RPS) to 100 percent clean electricity by 2040
      • Setting all-electric construction standards and zero-emissions appliance standards
      • Increasing active transportation and public transit options and expanding electric vehicle infrastructure
    • The final plan will incorporate stakeholder input and be submitted to Governor Moore and the General Assembly by December 31st, 2023.

    November 17, 2023

    • Maryland appointed its first Chief Sustainability Officer to help meet the state’s climate and environmental goals, as well as its first Chief Resilience Officer to help the state better prepare for, mitigate, and recover from climate hazards and emergencies.

    Massachusetts

    January 13, 2023

    April 7, 2023

    • On March 30th, Massachusetts announced its formal adoption of the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II), which requires that every new light-duty car sold in the state is a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) by 2035. 

    June 16, 2023

    • Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey announced the creation of a new green bank focused on making affordable housing more climate-friendly. The “Massachusetts Community Climate Bank” will receive $50 million in state funding, and will be eligible to receive federal financing from the IRA’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.

    August 11, 2023

    • Massachusetts Governor Healey signed into law a $56 billion state budget on August 9th. Funding towards climate and energy programs includes:
      • A 27 percent increase in funding for the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, which oversees the state’s environmental and energy agencies, to help the state meet its climate targets. Some of this new funding will also create an office to coordinate energy market reform and transmission and new environmental justice staff.
      • $30 million for the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center to support wind technology, clean homes, and green workforce training programs.
      • $200 million for public transportation improvements, accessibility, and planning; and $5 million for means-tested fares.
      • Funding for re-entry pathways including green career training programs.

    October 6, 2023

    • On October 3rd, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut signed a first-of-its-kind agreement to coordinate on offshore wind projects. The “Offshore Wind Multi-State Memorandum of Understanding” calls for the three states to jointly consider bids from offshore wind developers. The states could collectively issue a solicitation for as much as 6,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity, and aim to lower project costs while providing benefits to all three states.

    October 20, 2023

    • Massachusetts released an updated Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan, called the “ResilientMass Plan,” on October 11th. ResilientMass identifies 15 cross-government actions and nearly 130 state agency actions to prepare for extreme weather and address issues such as affordable housing, food security, coastal protection, and health impacts of climate change, especially to vulnerable populations.

    November 3, 2023

    • Massachusetts’ climate chief published a new report with recommendations for how the state can meet its target of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. The report highlights 39 recommendations across eight topics such as environmental justice, emissions mitigation, economic development, and funding.

    Michigan

    August 11, 2023

    • On July 26th, Governor Whitmer signed a series of bills to expand clean energy and energy efficiency programs and environmental protections in Michigan.
      • HB 4317 and 4318 allow local governments and commercial solar energy developments to opt into payments in lieu of taxes (PILT) as an alternative to paying local property taxes.
      • SB 288 extends the Michigan Energy Assistance Program (MEAP), which helps low-income households with energy bill assistance and becoming more energy efficient.
      • SB 302 and 303 expand the eligibility of properties and projects for Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing — a program that allows building owners and contractors to finance energy efficient and climate resilient projects.
      • SB 14 repeals the requirement that state regulations cannot be stricter than federal rules, strengthening Michigan’s ability to pass stronger environmental regulations.
    • The fiscal year 2024 budget (HB 4437), signed by Governor Whitmer on July 31st, also includes funding for clean energy, conservation, and environmental justice. A summary from Whitmer’s office can be found here; funding highlights include: 
      • $70 million to expand clean transportation options like transit and high-speed rail.
      • $14 million to implement the MI Healthy Climate Plan, which outlines the state’s plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.
      • $5.5 million for the Michigan Saves green bank.
      • $13 million for agricultural climate resiliency and soil health.
      • $350 million for the Make it in Michigan Competitiveness Fund to leverage federal funding.
      • $21.3 million for clean energy and electric vehicle infrastructure investments.

      December 1, 2023

      • Michigan Governor Whitmer signed a suite of climate and clean energy bills into law on November 28th aimed at drastically increasing renewable and clean energy generation, reforming utility resource planning, and preparing for the state’s clean energy transition. The package includes the following bills:
        • SB 271 sets a minimum renewable portfolio standard (RPS), requiring 15 percent renewable energy by 2027, 50 percent by 2030, and 60 percent by 2035. The legislation also sets a 100 percent clean energy standard (CES) by 2040, which includes sources such as renewables, nuclear, and hydrogen fuel, as well as interim targets.
        • SB 273 establishes an energy efficiency resource standard (EERS), requiring electric utilities to achieve a minimum of 1.5 percent annual electric energy efficiency savings starting in 2026, with an additional incentive goal of 2 percent and higher. It also sets the natural gas energy waste reduction target to 0.875 percent at the start of 2026.
        • HB 5120 gives the Michigan Public Service Commission (PSC) the power to approve zoning applications for some large solar and wind energy projects. 
        • SB 519 creates a “Community and Worker Economic Transition Office” within the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity. The new office would be responsible for assisting workers and communities during the state’s renewable energy and electric vehicle transition, and must submit an economic transition plan to the governor and legislature by the end of 2025.
        • SB 277 codifies an existing state rule allowing farmers to rent their land for solar arrays while staying enrolled in the state’s farmland preservation program.
        • SB 502 instructs the Michigan PSC to weigh factors like equity, environmental justice, affordability, public health and more when making regulatory decisions about the state’s utilities.
        • HB 4706 allows for electric vehicle (EV) charging station operators to re-sell electricity to EV owners without requiring the operators to be regulated as utilities. This bill is intended to boost EV charging infrastructure in the state.

      Minnesota

      February 10, 2023: 

      • Minnesota became the latest state to commit to 100 percent clean electricity, after Governor Walz signed HF 7 into law on February 7th. The legislation updates the state’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS), adding a requirement that 55 percent of electricity sold by Minnesota utilities must be generated by renewable energy sources by 2035. The legislation also establishes a “carbon free standard”, which requires the state’s utilities to use 100 percent “carbon free” electricity by 2040, with interim targets of 80 percent by 2030 and 90 percent by 2035.
      •  HF 7 codifies Minnesota’s definition of environmental justice (EJ) communities, called used by state agencies, and prevents power produced by waste incineration in EJ communities from counting towards the 2040 target. It also contains provisions that will help streamline the permitting process for new energy projects in the state, set minimum wage requirements for large-scale energy projects, and prioritize local job creation for those projects.

      April 21, 2023

      • Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed HF 1656 into law on April 18th, establishing the State Competitiveness Fund in the Minnesota Department of Commerce. The $115 million Fund provides grants for state agencies and local and Tribal governments to meet matching fund requirements for Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) funding opportunities. Other entities, including nonprofits, higher education institutions, and utilities, are also eligible for grant funding. The Department can also use funding to cover grant development and technical assistance costs.

      June 2, 2023

      • Minnesota’s legislative session ended on May 22nd, with lawmakers passing a historic package of bills this session. In addition to mandating 100 percent clean electricity by 2040, Governor Walz signed a $2 billion omnibus climate and environment bill, a transportation budget bill, and an economic development bill into law last week. Together, these three new laws:
        • Create the state’s first green bank, called the Minnesota Climate Innovation Finance Authority, with $45 million in funding.
        • Codify new climate targets, requiring the state to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent by 2030 (relative to 2005 levels) and reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
        • Fund a $16 million electric vehicle (EV) rebate program that provides point-of-sale rebates for new and used EVs. Another $13 million will help school districts replace their diesel-burning vehicles with electric school buses.
        • Require cumulative impact analyses for certain permit applications, and give the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency authority to deny permits if an analysis shows that the permit will result in additional environmental stressors in environmental justice areas. 
        • Require the adoption of new commercial energy codes from 2024 to 2036 that incrementally move toward achieving an 80 percent reduction in annual net energy consumption.
        • Allocate hundreds of millions of dollars to expand passenger rail service and improve safety on trains and buses.
        • Create $13 million in grants and rebates to help homeowners install electric heat pumps.
      • Governor Walz also signed HF 24, which funds the replacement of lead service lines throughout the state by 2033. The legislation allocates $240 million in state funds, and unlocks an additional $43.3 million annually over the next five years from IIJA funds.

      Minnesota

      March 20,2023

      • On February 15, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy issued a series of executive orders that advance the state’s climate goals. Executive Order 315 accelerates the state’s clean energy target from 2050 to 2035, requiring 100 percent clean electricity by 2035. Executive Order 316 sets a building decarbonization goal of electrifying 400,000 homes and 20,000 commercial spaces by 2030, as well as making 10 percent of low-to-moderate income (LMI) residential units “electrification ready” by 2030. Governor Murphy also directed the Department of Environmental Protection to adopt Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) in New Jersey by the end of 2023, which would require all new cars and light-duty truck sales to be zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) by 2035.

      April 21, 2023

      • On April 17th, New Jersey finalized regulations to implement the state’s landmark 2020 Environmental Justice (EJ) Law aimed at reducing pollution in communities subjected to a disproportionately high number of environmental and public health stressors. 
        • First, the rules require enhanced upfront community engagement before such facilities are proposed in the state’s overburdened communities. Second, using community-level environmental and public health data available through DEP’s Environmental Justice Mapping, Assessment and Protection (EJMAP) tool, the EJ Rules direct permit applicants to avoid and minimize environmental and public health stressors and enable the DEP to establish permit conditions that better protect vulnerable communities.

      August 11, 2023

      • The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities approved a framework for utilities to submit building electrification plans to implement the state’s energy efficiency programs. Utility building decarbonization programs will offer financial incentives to accelerate heat pump adoption and help meet Governor Murphy’s goal of electrifying at least 400,000 homes and 20,000 commercial properties by 2030.

      December 1, 2o23

      • On November 21st, New Jersey Governor Murphy announced that the state will become the latest to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) on December 18th. Starting in model year 2027, vehicle manufacturers are required to sell an increasing number of zero-emission vehicles, ramping up to 100 percent of new light-duty vehicle sales by 2035.

      New Mexico

      June 16, 2023

      • On June 1st, New Mexico Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard issued an executive order that places a moratorium on new oil and gas leases on state trust lands within a mile of schools or other educational institutions, including day care centers, preschools, and sports facilities that students use. The order also calls for the State Land Office to review all existing oil and gas leases on state trust land within a mile of schools to assess compliance with state regulations relating to air quality and environmental compliance.

      October 20, 2023

      • New Mexico Governor Lujan Grisham signed an executive order on October 16th directing state agencies to switch to an all-electric vehicle fleet by 2035. The order directs departments to purchase zero-emission vehicles for all new acquisitions where at least one option is available. State agencies are also directed to install charging stations when designing and constructing new facilities. Governor Grisham also intends to pursue tax credits for new and used electric vehicles during the upcoming legislative session, since the state does not currently offer them.

      November 17, 2023

      • On October 13th, New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced the creation of the state’s first green bank. The “New Mexico Climate Investment Center” is expected to receive about $60 million from the National Clean Investment Fund as part of the IRA’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF).

      December 1, 2023

      • On November 16th, New Mexico regulators voted to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) standard through 2032, requiring that 82 percent of new vehicles sold that year are electric vehicles (EVs) or plug-in hybrids. The rules stop short of the 100 percent EV sales mandate in 2035 that California and seven other states have adopted so far. Regulators also voted to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT), a rule that requires an increasing percentage of medium- and heavy-duty trucks sold in the state to be zero-emission. Both standards will begin with model year 2027.

      New York

      January 13, 2023

      • New York’s latest climate plan was approved by the Climate Action Council on December 19, 2022. The plan focuses on strategies to achieve a 40 percent reduction in emissions below 1990 levels by 2030 and 85 percent by 2050, and 100 percent zero-emissions electricity by 2040. Major recommendations include establishing an economy-wide cap-and-invest program, adopting zero-emission building codes, and requiring new vehicle sales to be zero-emission.
      • Additionally, Governor Hochul signed a cumulative impacts bill on December 31, which now requires an analysis of “cumulative impacts” on disadvantaged communities before a permit is approved or renewed. Permits that will cause or contribute to a disproportionate and/or inequitable pollution burden on a disadvantaged community will be denied.

      April 7, 2023

      • New York released its finalized list of disadvantaged communities (DACs)throughout the state and a series of interactive maps that highlight the designated areas. State law requires that 35 percent of the benefits of clean energy and energy efficiency spending to meet the state’s climate targets are directed to DACs in the state.

      May 5, 2023

      • New York lawmakers finalized the state’s fiscal year 2024 budget on May 2nd, which includes major climate provisions to meet its statutory climate targets. The state became the first in the nation to pass a law banning natural gas hookups and other fossil fuels in most new buildings, requiring all-electric heating and cooking in new buildings under seven stories by 2026, and by 2029 for taller buildings.
      • The budget also sets the foundation for an economy-wide cap-and-invest program by creating a “New York climate action fund” and earmarking funds for energy affordability and projects to reduce emissions. The Department of Environmental Conservation will release a draft program this year, with details including the declining emissions cap over time and the necessary guardrails to protect and benefit disadvantaged and low-income communities.

      September 22, 2023

      • New York Governor Hochul announced the adoption of buy clean rulesfor concrete used in state-funded building and transportation projects. The first-in-the-nation “Buy Clean Concrete” guidelines set emissions limits on the embodied carbon in concrete, and state projects must use concrete mixes that have an environmental impact below the limits set by the state.
      • Hochul also announced a $20 million State Energy Financing Fund to provide direct capital support and credit enhancements for decarbonization projects in disadvantaged communities.

      October 6, 2023

      • Starting November 29th, New York will make $100 million available for schools to adopt zero-emissions buses and provide technical assistance to support school districts and fleet operators. The New York School Bus Incentive Program (NYSBIP) will allow bus manufacturers and dealers to offer point of sale purchase incentives to lower costs and provide funding for charging infrastructure. This is the first portion of $500 million in funds provided for electric school buses and charging infrastructure through the state’s Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act of 2022.

      Oregon

      January 13, 2023

      • On December 19, 2022, Oregon and Washington became the latest states to adopt the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) program, setting both states on a path to lower transportation emissions by requiring that every new light-duty vehicle sold in state be a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) by 2035.

      April 7, 2023

      • Oregon published the Oregon Climate Action Roadmap to 2030, which includes recommendations to meet the state’s goal of reducing emissions 45 percent below 1990 levels by 2035. The report also identifies additional policies to accelerate meeting the climate goal in 2030 instead.

      August 11, 2023

      • Oregon Governor Tina Kotek signed a $90 million Climate Resilience Package into law that focuses on community resiliency, climate adaptation, and reducing emissions in the buildings sector. The two bills, HB 3630 and HB 3409, combine 20 individual policies and seek to leverage billions of dollars of federal funding. The package includes:
        • A goal of installing 500,000 electric heat pumps in Oregon homes and commercial buildings by 2030, and new programs to support heat pump deployment, energy efficiency, and weatherization.
        • A building performance standard for large commercial buildings.
        • A new rebate program for medium- and heavy-duty zero emission vehicles using federal funding from the Inflation Reduction Act.
        • An updated, more efficient base building code, and a directive to set energy efficiency goals for new residential and commercial construction that achieve a 60 percent reduction in annual energy consumption by 2030, compared to 2006-era codes.
        • Directing the Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) to develop a comprehensive state energy strategy that identifies policy options and implementation gaps.
        • $10 million in funding for community resilience hubs and networks across the state to provide access to resources for vulnerable populations during disasters.
        • An extension of the Solar + Storage Rebate Program and the Residential Heat Pump Program.
        • Renaming the Oregon Global Warming Commission to the “Oregon Climate Action Commission” with expanded membership and responsibilities.
      • ODOE has a comprehensive summary of the Climate Resilience Package and other energy legislation passed this session, which can be found here.

      Pennsylvania

      September 8, 2023

      • The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) updated its environmental justice (EJ) policy after nearly 20 years, and expanded the Office of Environmental Justice. The EJ policy will go into effect on September 16th, focusing on enhancing public participation in permitting processes and encouraging DEP staff to prioritize EJ communities when inspecting facilities and distributing grant dollars. 
      • DEP also released an improved EJ mapping tool called PennEnviroScreen, which uses 32 environmental, health, and socioeconomic indicators to identify overburdened communities. The tool will be used to determine if a permit’s facility is within an EJ area.

      November 17, 2023

      • Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro announced new efforts to monitor and regulate the oil and gas industry, including an agreement with natural gas producer CNX to expand environmental monitoring at well sites. Shapiro also instructed the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to pursue rulemaking to require disclosure of all fracking chemicals, limit methane emissions, strengthen drilling waste protections, and improve measures to prevent leaks and corrosion at well sites and in pipelines.

      December 1, 2023

      • Pennsylvania Governor Shapiro’s administration will appeal a court decision that struck down the state’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a cap-and-trade program for electricity emissions in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.

      Rhode Island

      September 8, 2023

      • Rhode Island enacted legislation (S 0855A) requiring the adoption of the 2024 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for new residential and commercial buildings once the codes are finalized later this year, becoming the first state to do so. The state building code standards committee is also directed to adopt the 2024 IECC’s “electric readiness” provisions within one year. Other legislation enacted this year includes:
        • H 5550A and S 1119 to phase out fluorescent light bulbs that contain mercury starting January 1, 2024.
        • S 0988 requires new and expanded parking lots to reserve a certain percentage of spots — depending on the size of the lot — for EV charging stations.
        • S 0684A and H 5853A reform the state’s solar siting requirements to protect forests. The bills also expand virtual net metering to commercial and industrial sites, at 80 percent of the retail rate, but caps eligibility at 275 megawatts and phases out the program by 2030.

      October 6, 2023

      • On October 3rd, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut signed a first-of-its-kind agreement to coordinate on offshore wind projects. The “Offshore Wind Multi-State Memorandum of Understanding” calls for the three states to jointly consider bids from offshore wind developers. The states could collectively issue a solicitation for as much as 6,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity, and aim to lower project costs while providing benefits to all three states.

      Vermont

      May 19, 2023

      • Vermont enacted the “Affordable Heat Act” (S.5) into law on May 11th, after the legislature voted to override Governor Phil Scott’s veto the week prior. It establishes a clean heat standard, requiring decreasing carbon intensity of heating fuels over time. The Public Utilities Commission must adopt rules to implement the clean heat standard by January 2025.

      Washington

      January 13, 2023

      • On December 19, 2022, Oregon and Washington became the latest states to adopt the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) program, setting both states on a path to lower transportation emissions by requiring that every new light-duty vehicle sold in state be a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) by 2035.

      May 19, 2023

      • Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed a series of climate-related bills into law on May 3rd, including:
        •  SB 5165Doubles the timeline required for transmission planning from 10 years to 20 years to better plan for the renewable energy transition. It also requires transmission planners to consider renewable energy projects in their work.
        • HB 1416Ensures large industrial energy consumers use renewable energy for their electricity sources.
        • SB 5447Requires the Department of Ecology to establish a pathway for sustainable aviation fuel in its Clean Fuels program, and provides tax incentives to encourage the production and use of these fuels.
        • HB 1181Integrates climate change into the state’s planning framework. It also requires local governments to support greenhouse gas emission reduction goals and foster resilience to climate effects and natural hazards.

      Wisconsin

      May 5, 2023

      • Wisconsin Governor Evers signed Executive Order #195 on April 19th, creating the Green Ribbon Commission on Clean Energy and Environmental Innovation to advise on establishing the Green Innovation Fund, the state’s first green bank.

      Federal Updates

      March 20,2023

      • The U.S. EPA released program guidance for the Climate Pollution Reduction Grants (CPRG), which will provide grants to states, local governments, tribes, and territories to develop and implement a climate or energy plan. The first phase provides $250 million for eligible entities to develop a climate plan, including $3 million for each state. States must submit a Notice of Intent to Participate (NOIP) to opt-in by March 31, 2023. As of March 14, 11 states have submitted a NOIP.

      April 7, 2023

      • Twenty-one states opted-in to the EPA’s Climate Pollution Reduction Grant program last week. Each state will receive a $3 million planning grant to develop short- and long-term climate action plans, and a four-year status report. These states will be eligible for $4.6 billion in competitive grants to implement strategies identified in their climate plans. States that did not opt-in are ineligible for the planning and implementation grants at the state-level.

      April 21, 2023

      • The Biden administration proposed new rules to dramatically reduce pollution from cars and trucks. The new rules, announced on April 12th, would require carmakers to cut pollution emitted from cars and pickups in 2032 to less than half of what they produce in 2026. The proposal does not include any electric vehicle (EV) sales requirements, however the EPA estimates EVs could make up 67 percent and 46 percent of new light- and medium-duty vehicle sales by model year (MY) 2032, respectively. The new rules would also establish more stringent standards to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from heavy-duty vehicles beginning in MY 2027 through 2032.

      June 30, 2023

      • The Environmental Protection Agency launched a $7 billion competitive grant program for solar projects in low-income communities across the country. The Solar For All program, which is funded by the Inflation Reduction Act’s $27 billion Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, will make up to 60 awards available to projects serving states, territories, tribes, regions and eligible nonprofits. Groups can apply through September 26 for the grants, which will guarantee that participating households save at least 20 percent on their electricity bills.

      July 14, 2023

      • The EPA finalized a rule to reduce hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) pollution by 40 percent between 2024 and 2028. This builds on rules in place for 2022 and 2023, as required by the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act, which seeks to phase down HFCs by 85 percent in the U.S. by 2036.
      • On Monday, the Department of the Interior announced the availability of $660 million for 26 states to plug orphaned oil and gas wells. The program requires states to measure methane emissions from plugged orphaned wells and consider wells near communities of color, low-income communities, and Tribal and Indigenous communities as a priority. States have until December 31, 2023 to apply for a Phase 1 formula grant, and additional funding will be available in the future.

      July 28, 2023

      • On July 14th, the U.S. EPA announced two new grant competitions that are accepting applications through October 12, 2023. The $14 billion National Clean Investment Fund (NCIF) will finance clean technology deployment nationally, and the $6 billion Clean Communities Investment Accelerator (CCIA) will finance clean technology deployment in low-income and disadvantaged communities and build capacity of community lenders serving these communities. 
      • Both of these grants are programs within the $27 billion Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund created by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). At least 40 percent of NCIF funds and 100 percent of CCIA funds must go to low-income and disadvantaged communities.
      • The Department of Energy (DOE) announced the availability of $150 million in formula grants for states to train, test, and certify home energy efficiency and electrification contractors through the State-Based Home Energy Efficiency Contractor Training Grants Program. Applications are due September 30, 2023.
      • The DOE and EPA announced that $350 million in formula grants will be available this summer for states to monitor and reduce methane emissions from oil and gas operations. The money comes from the IRA’s Methane Emissions Reduction Program, which set aside $1.55 billion for states to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas sector. The two agencies will also provide technical assistance to help companies detect and curb methane emissions from leaks and daily operations.

        August 11, 2023

        • The Department of Energy (DOE) opened applications for the two Home Energy Rebate Programs: the Home Efficiency Rebates Program and the Home Electrification and Appliance Rebates Program. Funded by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), the programs will provide $8.5 billion in formula grants for states and territories to reduce upfront costs of residential energy efficiency and electrification upgrades. State applications are reviewed and approved on a rolling basis.

        September 8, 2023

        • The Department of Energy (DOE) announced a funding opportunity for the Transmission Siting and Economic Development Program on August 29th. The program will provide $300 million to help states, tribes, and local governments speed up transmission siting and permitting and support local economic development. Applicants for grants must submit “concept papers” this fall, with full applications due April 5, 2024.
        • As of August 30th, states can now apply for the first funding portion of the IRA’s Methane Emissions Reduction Program. The DOE and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are accepting states’ applications for the initial $350 million to monitor and reduce methane emissions from oil and gas operations until September 30th.

        September 22, 2023

        • On Wednesday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of $4.6 billion for the Climate Pollution Reduction Implementation Grant competitions, of which a $4.3 billion general competition is open to states, municipalities, tribes, and territories. The grants will fund greenhouse gas reducing initiatives identified by the first phase of the Climate Pollution Reduction Grants(CPRG) program, which funds the development of climate action plans. Applications for CPRG Implementation grants are due by April 1, 2024.
        •  The EPA also finalized a rule on September 14th that gives states and tribes more authority to oppose gas pipelines, coal terminals and other projects that threaten bodies of water. The final rule reverses a Trump-era regulation and restores states’ authority to block projects that threaten water quality under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act.
        •  The Department of Energy (DOE) released program guidance and opened applications for $400 million in formula funding for states and territories to adopt and implement the latest building energy codes and zero energy codes. States will need to submit a Letter of Intent to reserve funds by November 21, 2023, and applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until September 30, 2025.
        • During Climate Week, the Biden Administration announced a new initiative to train young people in skills needed to join the clean energy workforce. The “American Climate Corps” will be a paid training program in areas like wetlands restoration, low-carbon energy deployment, forest management, and more. Following the announcement, Arizona, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina and Utah announced they will also create state-level climate corps programs.

        October 20, 2023

        • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced two new rules to phase down hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) that will help to achieve a 40 percent reduction of HFCs starting in 2024 and an 85 percent reduction by 2036, as required by the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act. The first is a final rule to accelerate the transition to more efficient and climate-safe technologies in new refrigeration, heating and cooling systems, and other products by restricting the use of HFCs where alternatives are already available. The second is a proposed rule to manage and reuse existing HFCs better, by reducing leaks from equipment and increasing HFC recycling and reclamation.

        November 17, 2023

        • As part of the Carbon Reduction Program, states were required to submit their Carbon Reduction Strategies by November 15th, which demonstrate how they’ll use federal money to reduce transportation emissions. The strategies identify specific projects and approaches to achieve this, such as reducing traffic congestion, increasing public and active transportation use, and switching to lower carbon modes of transportation relative to existing modes.
        • To participate in the Department of Energy’s (DOE) program offering $400 million in formula funding for states and territories to adopt and implement the latest building energy codes and zero energy codes, states will need to submit a Letter of Intent to reserve funds by November 21, 2023. Full applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until September 30, 2025.

        December 1, 2023