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Midwest governors sign climate change accord.

Nine Midwestern governors signed a pact to reduce greenhouse gases, promote energy efficiency and conservation and fight global warming. The pact includes the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota, South Dakota, Wisconsin and the Canadian province of Manitoba.

Under the accord, the governors agreed that wind power, water and other renewable sources should eventually provide up to 30 percent of the region's electricity. They also agreed to reduce energy use 2 percent by 2015 and to continue to reduce it by 2 percent every year after that.

Additionally, a regional cap-and-trade program will be developed and targeted for implementation by mid-2010. While all states agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Indiana, Ohio and South Dakota did not sign into the cap-and-trade program.

Iowa Governor Chet Culver called the move "a great opportunity for our country to come together and put partisan politics aside, and become an international leader on this issue."

Other such programs have been set up among western and northeastern states, and the World Resources Institute reports that this third program now means approximately half of Americans are included in agreements to combat global warming.

Additionally, as a region, the area covered in this latest agreement ranks fifth among the world's largest greenhouse gas emitters.

"We are a little smaller, more nimble than the federal government ... perhaps we can roll it up into part of a larger national policy," said Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.
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Author:Berndt, Carolyn
Publication:Nation's Cities Weekly
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 26, 2007
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