A decade ago, Oklahoma was one of the most environmentally conscious states in the country.
Now the state is at a turning point, according to a new report.
“Oklahoma is at the cutting edge of environmental sustainability and the state has now crossed a tipping point,” said Michael Siegel, an ecologist and director of the Center for Energy Policy at Rice University.
“We’re going to see this state reach the tipping point with some pretty dramatic changes.”
Oklahoma became the first state to pass a law that prohibits burning fossil fuels, including coal and oil, and to require a 50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030.
The state also became the only US state to ban the use of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and propane for transportation.
As part of its climate action plan, Oklahoma has also pledged to double its solar power generation by 2030 and to install 2,500 wind turbines by 2030, as well as a 100 megawatt solar power plant.
But the state also has vowed to reduce emissions from all sources, including burning fossil fuel.
The state’s green energy target of 20% of the state’s electricity by 2030 was a target set by President Donald Trump.
Oklahomans are still grappling with the impacts of climate change, but this is the first time they’ve taken on the challenge alone.
Siegel said the new report was the result of a collaboration between the Oklahoma Climate Action Coalition, a local environmental group, and the Center to Protect Rural America, an advocacy group for rural communities.
The group aims to reduce the impact of climate changes on Oklahoma families and communities.
According to the group, Oklahoma’s recent economic boom was one factor behind the shift to a greener future.
“The boom and the boom and boom in energy, in the energy sector, was a big factor,” Siegel said.
“And we see the same pattern happening in Oklahoma.”
“This is a watershed year for the state of Oklahoma,” said Scott Horsley, executive director of Oklahomas Environmental Coalition.
“This is an opportunity to put an end to the trend of the past 10 years.”
As Oklahoma prepares to transition from an oil and gas economy to a more sustainable one, the state continues to struggle with rising carbon emissions, a trend that is expected to accelerate as the climate warms.
The latest US government data show that the number of CO2-related air pollutants in Oklahoma reached a record high in March, reaching 6,068,826.
Scientists are worried that the state could soon face a tipping-point climate change event.
A recent report by the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality warned that climate change could push the state over a threshold that could put the state in danger of “an abrupt, catastrophic event.”
The state is already at risk of drought, wildfires and extreme weather that could make it difficult to keep up with rising sea levels, according the report.
“The impacts of a warmer climate are real, and they are already being felt in Oklahoma,” Horsly said.
More from ABC News:Oklahoma climate action coalition calls on governor to approve coal plant constructionOklahoma governor asks Oklahoma to consider carbon capture and storageOklahoma joins a growing list of states that are pushing to capture and store carbon dioxide to fight climate changeOklahoma now has a carbon capture plant on the books, according a new study.
The study released on Tuesday by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Oklahoma Energy Center found that the plant, at the site of the former Shell refinery in Norman, is currently operating on a budget of $7 million.
Oklahoma will use the money to install about 20,000 pounds of carbon capture technology to capture CO2 from the air and store it for use in the state, which will be used to combat global warming.
The plant, which is slated to start generating power by 2020, will be located in a former coal plant, the EPA said in a news release.
The project is part of a $60 million project to expand the state coal fleet and is expected, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said.
A new study by the US Environmental Protection Administration (EPA), released on Monday, found that Oklahoma is at risk for climate change.
The report found that a warmer global climate could push Oklahoma over a tipping points, which could cause the state to experience a drastic increase in air pollution.
The Oklahoma Energy Centers, a research and analysis center funded by the EPA, said the EPA report showed that Oklahoma has been one of 21 states in America that have already set a goal to achieve net zero CO2 emissions by 2065.
The US is currently the fourth largest emitter of CO02, behind China, India and South Korea, the report said.
The report also found that while Oklahoma has committed to reducing emissions by 30% by 2030 compared to the EPA’s previous target, it still plans to exceed its 2030 emissions reduction goal.
Oklahoman Oklahomasans are rallying to free circus entertainer Gary Horsley.
The Oklahoma City-based circus company announced on Twitter late Sunday that it had agreed to pay Horsleys $2.2 million in damages.
The move comes as Horskins’ attorneys filed an amicus brief in a lawsuit challenging the company’s termination.
Horsley is accused of assaulting a woman in October and then threatening her with a knife at a Tulsa carnival last month.
The Tulsa Police Department said Horski was arrested after the incident.HORSLEY’S attorney, Jason Farkas, has said the charges are false and that Horsler has not assaulted anyone.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.