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Action needed now for Minnesota to reach goals in reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2015
Date:7/21/2008

The state of Minnesota must act now if it wants to reach its Minnesota Next Generation Energy Act goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 15 percent by 2015, according to a team of University of Minnesota transportation and public policy researchers.

The research team, which will release the new study Tuesday, July 22, modeled emissions for Minnesota and found that it is possible to reduce emissions by 30 percent by 2025 and 80 percent by 2050 and possibly exceed those numbers if a combination of strategies are implemented, including reducing fuel consumption, increasing fuel efficiencies and fuel carbon content and by using new methods for designing communities. However, the researchers point out that the methods could be applied nationally. In fact, history shows that when one state or city implements environmental policy changes, the nation often follows.

To view a video about the study, visit: http://www1.umn.edu/urelate/newsservice/Multimedia_Videos/ghg_study.htm

"The emission reduction goal is achievable if action starts today," said Bob Johns, director of the Center for Transportation Studies. "By changing the amount of traveling we do, purchasing vehicles with higher fuel efficiency and adopting low-carbon fuel standards we can exceed the goals that the Minnesota legislature has put before us and be a leader in the nation for reducing greenhouse gas emissions."

"This study provides a great starting point for the 2009 legislative session and will help facilitate a thorough debate and good policy development to create cost effective solutions and improve Minnesota's energy security," said Rep. Melissa Hortman, who commissioned the study.

The researchers say that the majority of the changes don't require any costly or new technologies and are applicable in other states too, not just Minnesota.

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Contact: Patty Mattern
mattern@umn.edu
612-624-2801
University of Minnesota
Source:Eurekalert

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