Utah Supports Regional Cap-and-Trade Plan
to Reduce Greenhouse Gases
Salt Lake City, Utah - The State of Utah joins other Western states and Canadian provinces in unveiling a plan today for a market-based cap-and-trade program as a major tool to meet a regional goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
"Today's plan is just the beginning of extensive discussions that will continue with our Legislature and stakeholders to ensure the design works for Utah. We will also continue to review economic analyses to ensure the recommendations provide cost-effective results," Dianne Nielson, energy adviser for Governor Huntsman, said. "The Western Climate Initiative gives Utah a critical seat at the table to communicate our need for all energy resources and maintaining our state's coal powered viability in a changing regional market."
The Western Climate Initiative (WCI), which includes Utah, has developed a multi-phased strategy that caps emissions from major sources that emit greenhouse gases while providing flexibility and economic benefits intended to spur continuous innovation of clean technologies.
"This market-based approach can help achieve the reductions that are needed to meet Utah's goal of reducing our emissions to 2005 levels by 2020," said Rick Sprott, executive director of the Utah Department of Environmental Quality. "Utah can provide leadership in the West and nationally in meeting these goals and increasing our energy efficiency."
Utah joined WCI in 2007, shortly after it was launched by the Governors of Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington to address climate change. The initiative expanded to include the state of Montana and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec. Thirteen other US States, Canadian provinces, and Mexican States are official Observers in the WCI.
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