The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) undertook a modeling analysis of technical pathways for achieving sharp cuts in economy wide, energy-related, heat-trapping emissions in the United States. They optimized the analysis for the lowest energy-system costs to better understand both the challenges and the opportunities that would arise when taking an expansive, interconnected view of energy, the economy, and society. The analysis shows that the United States has viable pathways to get to net-zero heat-trapping emissions no later than 2050.

This report “Accelerating Clean Energy Ambition” shines a light on what is needed and possible. It also points to dead ends and dangerous distractions, as well as to genuinely hard issues that the society needs to wrestle with—in a just and equitable way—as it confronts the climate challenge. Because the actions to date of policymakers have been grossly insufficient, and because fossil fuel companies have used their outsize power to delay and obstruct climate action, the nation is in a very difficult situation today and the road ahead will require balancing a range of interests and priorities. That balance should clearly favor those who are most marginalized and who have long been overburdened by fossil fuel pollution, not deep-pocketed and powerful fossil fuel interests.

Access the report here