Lobbying group readying plan to reduce greenhouse gasby Stephanie Hemphill, Minnesota Public Radio
People working on a plan for reducing greenhouse gases in the Midwest are meeting in Minneapolis this week.
St. Paul, Minn. — Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty got the project going in 2007, when he was chair of the Midwestern Governors Association.
Advisory groups have been meeting to hammer out recommendations on everything from becoming more efficient, to encouraging low-carbon fuels, to learning how to store carbon dioxide.
They're also designing a cap-and-trade program -- the same basic idea that's now being debated in Congress. It's a market-based approach that advocates said will keep the costs of reducing greenhouse gases relatively low.
Bill Grant, with the Izaak Walton League, is a member of the advisory group that's designing the cap-and-trade program.
"There's a lot of interest in making sure we get done soon, next week, so we can have an influence as the federal debate moves forward," Grant said.
Some of the thorniest issues have yet to be resolved -- such as whether allowances will be given away to industry or auctioned off, and whether the transportation sector should be included under the cap.
The group plans to have its recommendations ready for the Midwestern governors by mid-week.