State task force to debate tough ideas for reducing global warmingby Stephanie Hemphill, Minnesota Public Radio
The Minnesota Climate Change Advisory Group holds its last meeting Thursday. It could move the state toward big changes in energy use.
St. Paul, Minn. — The 55-member group has been studying dozens of ideas for reducing the state's carbon footprint. Ideas range from investing more in renewable energy, to planning cities so people will drive less.
Many of the toughest questions have been postponed until this last meeting.
Bill Grant from the Izaak Walton League says the science on global warming clearly suggests that strong action is needed.
"This is a big step we need to take, and it needs to involve all sectors of the economy, all actors within those sectors," says Grant. "I think people are beginning to have that realization -- this means them, not somebody else."
Another member of the task force, Robert Jagusch, director of utilities for the city of Mora, says the group has been very conscious of the costs of each approach.
"There is a price to be paid for everything. It's going to all come down to consumer or energy users, none of this is free," says Jagusch.
The group will forward its recommendations to Gov. Pawlenty, who will then report to the Legislature. Members of the House and Senate are already drafting legislation aimed at reducing energy use.