Romney unveils climate protection plan for Massachusetts

by William Yeatman on May 11, 2004

Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney unveiled his new climate protection plan on May 6. The plan calls for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions within the state of Massachusetts to 1990 levels by 2010 and by an additional 10 percent by 2020. Containing 72 specific suggestions, the plan is supposed to reduce pollution, cut energy demands, and nurture employment growth for the state.

Romney commented, “Economic success and environmental protection go hand in hand. The steps we are taking today will ensure a cleaner environment and a brighter future for generations to come.” He also maintained that the plan is one of the nation’s strongest to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and said it exhibited a strong dedication to implementing the New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers global warming plan from August 2001 (which, by the way, is clearly unconstitutional: see Article 1, Section 10).

The proposals range from encouraging the construction of “green” schools and buildings to developing a trading market for emissions within Massachusetts. Additionally, the state will implement a greenhouse gas inventory in order to track greenhouse gas emissions.

Despite launching the plan, Romney, a Republican, said that he remained personally agnostic about global warming, which led to attacks from environmental groups for deviating from the party line (Boston Globe, May 7).

In neighboring Connecticut, the General Assembly has passed a climate bill discussed in the March 31 issue. The bill would require greenhouse gas emissions to be reduced by using Kyoto-like measures. Just as in Romneys new plan, the Connecticut bill would reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2010 and 10 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. The bill is currently awaiting the Governors signature for approval (Associated Press, May 5).

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