WASHINGTON, D.C. – With 24 hours to go before the historic Northeast Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is finalized, Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA), a senior member of the House Resources and Energy and Commerce Committees, along with Senators Kennedy and Kerry and Representatives Frank, Neal, Olver, Meehan, Delahunt, McGovern, Tierney, Capuano and Lynch sent a letter to Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney urging him to include the Bay State in the this critical regional pact to reduce emissions.  The entire MA Congressional Delegation supports the RGGI, a cap and trade program between seven Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states for greenhouse gas emissions from power plants – which caps carbon dioxide emissions at approximately current levels through 2015 and aims to reduce emissions by 10 percent by 2020. Carbon dioxide emissions cause asthma and respiratory illness in children and the elderly and are also the leading cause of global warming. 

“While New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont are racing ahead to a cleaner future, Governor Romney is forcing Massachusetts to take a step backwards,” said Rep. Markey.  “With pollution-induced childhood asthmas on the rise and manmade climate change a reality, Massachusetts should be part of the solution, not a dead-weight on progress.” 

The letter from the twelve lawmakers urges Governor Romney to join the rest of the Northeast in embracing this important pact: “Massachusetts should join seven other Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states and sign the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). This landmark regional agreement would work to curb carbon dioxide emissions that lead to global warming.”  

“The Northeast Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is a critical step forward not only for the people of Massachusetts, but also for the rest of the country as a model for what can be accomplished through market-based reductions in carbon dioxide emissions,” continued the lawmakers. 

Nationwide, power plants are the leading industrial source of air pollution, producing 39% of carbon dioxide emissions. The Northeast RGGI is supported by a number of power companies operating in the Northeast, including Keyspan, National Grid and Calpine.

MA Delegation Letter to Gov. Romney, December 14, 2005

For Immediate Release
December 14, 2005

 CONTACT: Tara McGuinness
Morgan Gray