Of course, that's not how Reuters paints the picture; they say that five states have 'bypassed Bush' on emissions. Would they have phrased it the same way if say, five states had agreed to expand oil drilling rights? And it's risible that they would use such a headline to describe the adoption of a carbon cap-and-trade system such as the type advocated by conservatives for many years.
I am highly skeptical of the notion that man is contributing significantly to global warming. Still, the result of this will be interesting. I'm curious as to whether they can create a mechanism to curb emissions and - even more unlikely - whether it measurably affects regional temperatures.
It won't of course, which ought to be taken as a warning against adoption of Kyoto-like plans that curb emissions from some large ecnomies, but leave others unaffected:
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Five Western U.S. states have formed the latest regional pact that bypasses the Bush administration to cut emissions linked to global warming through market mechanisms, according to Oregon's governor.
Oregon, California, Washington, New Mexico and Arizona have agreed to develop a regional target for reducing greenhouse emissions in six months, according a statement from Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski.
During the next 18 months, the governors will devise a market-based program, such as a load-based cap and trade program to reach the target. The five states also have agreed to participate in a multi-state registry to track and manage greenhouse gas emissions in their region.
The Western Regional Climate Action Initiative comes on the heels of an agreement in the East called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
"With the Western states you've got a huge part of the U.S. economy that are beginning to regulate greenhouse gases," said Jeremiah Baumann, an advocate with the Oregon State Public Interest Research Group.
California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger recently passed the country's toughest greenhouse emissions laws which aim to reduce the state's economy-wide output of the gases by 25 percent by 2020.
Monday's agreement "sets the stage for a regional cap and trade program, which will provide a powerful framework for developing a national cap and trade program," Schwarzenegger said in a statement on Monday. "This agreement shows the power of states to lead our nation addressing climate change."