| NEW YORK
NEW YORK With pressure growing on the U.S.
government to regulate greenhouse gas emissions blamed for
global warming, 31 U.S. states will start a registry next year
to track those emissions with an eye toward reducing them.
"If you don't have a sense of what your disease is you
can't diagnose it," Heather Kaplan, a climate policy analyst at
the Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management, who
has worked to help form registry, said in a telephone
The Climate Registry will log emissions from corporations,
nonprofit groups, and municipalities in states representing 70
percent of the U.S. population. Two Canadian provinces, British
Columbia and Manitoba, also have agreed to participate.
The tool to track, verify, and publicly report greenhouse
emissions across industry sectors and state borders was formed
by the governors and environment secretaries of the states. It
will start accepting emissions data in January 2008.
"The big story here is that this many states from all sides
of the political spectrum have established a registry
together," said Kaplan. The United States is the world's top
emitter of carbon dioxide and the other five heat-trapping
gases scientists link to global warming.
She said there was "no way" that entities could overstate
their emissions in an attempt to ease any future emissions
limits placed on them, because all emissions logged will be
verified by a third party.
Scientists say greenhouse emissions could lead to more
deadly droughts, heat waves and flooding.
Unlike developed countries in Europe, the United States,
the world's top emitter of greenhouse gases, does not regulate
them. But states on both coasts have formed regional pacts to
cut emissions, and several bills in U.S. Congress seek a
The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in the East seeks to
cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. California,
which is seeking to cut greenhouse emissions 25 percent by
2020, and four other states have formed the Western Regional
Climate Action Initiative to cut emissions.
The registry will support those programs and other states
taking actions to cut greenhouse gases. It was modeled on the
California Climate Action Registry which has certified more
than 300 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, about the
amount of Brazil's greenhouse emissions.
The log anticipates opening several regional support
offices throughout the country.
Companies and organizations could log early actions in
cutting greenhouse gases on the registry and possibly get
credit for them if future state or national limits on the gases