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Monday, February 18, 2008

Maryland: Global Warming Solutions Act

Smart Growth Measures Part of Strategy Endorsed in Maryland's Global Warming Solutions Act
Source: Baltimore Sun 1/30/2008

With 3,100 miles of shoreline making Maryland ''the fourth-most-vulnerable state to the effects of global warming,'' the lead sponsors of its Global Warming Solutions Act, Senate Environment Subcommittee Democratic Chairman Paul. G. Pinsky and House of Delegates Democratic Majority Leader Kumar Barve, urge the General Assembly ''to take real action on global warming'' this session and pass the act that would cut greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020 and 90 percent by 2050, through new statewide efficiency and resource-management programs, including Smart Growth measures.

''Why now? Because we can't continue to wait and debate,'' they write in a Baltimore Sun oped column, warning that delay would damage Maryland's economy and environment, particularly the Chesapeake Bay.

In contrast, they stress, ''the Global Warming Solutions Act would mean significant investment in renewable energy, energy efficiency and green buildings, creating 'green collar' jobs for Marylanders and saving taxpayers money in the long run, while reversing an environmentally destructive trend.''

With the White House failing to join international accords on climate change, ''(w)e no longer can wait for the federal government to act,'' they write. ''Even if voters elect a pro-environment president in November, there is still a long battle ahead in Congress.''

But if Maryland ''joins other states -- California, New Jersey and Hawaii -- that have adopted legislation to fight global warming,'' they point out, ''it can only hasten Congress, and the White House, to approve a national policy.''