A Shift in the Debate Over Global Warming

Most of the focus in the last few years has centered on imposing caps on greenhouse gas emissions to prod energy users to conserve or switch to nonpolluting technologies.

But now, with recent data showing an unexpected rise in global emissions and a decline in energy efficiency, a growing chorus of economists, scientists and students of energy policy are saying that whatever benefits the cap approach yields, it will be too little and come too late.

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Concerns make coal future unclear

WASHINGTON – Coal-producing states that supply nearly half of the nation’s electricity are feeling squeezed as efforts to combat global warming outpace technology needed to make the nation’s most abundant fossil fuel burn more cleanly.

In 2007, proposals for 59 coal plants were scrapped in 24 states, either by state regulators concerned about the effects of carbon dioxide emissions or by power companies worried about the future costs of pollution, according to data from the Sierra Club.

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Montana transmission line hearing generates praise, concerns

A public hearing on what would be the first merchant transmission line between Canada and the United States drew 100 residents to Great Falls on Tuesday, with economic development officials and elected officials singing its praises and farmers raising concerns.

The $150 million Montana Alberta Tie Line would stretch 230 miles — 129 of them in Montana — between Great Falls and Lethbridge, Alberta. It’s being proposed by Montana Alberta Tie Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Toronto-based Tonbridge Power Inc.

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