On the environment, GOP governors forge ahead

Schwarzenegger and Crist on Bush's lack of leadership, suing the EPA and greening their states.

By Julia Dahl

Published July 16, 2007 6:25PM (EDT)

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was at a climate conference in Miami last week, praising fellow Republican Gov. Charlie Crist's environmental leadership in Florida. Alluding to President Bush's apparent lack of movement on the subject, Schwarzenegger said he was "very proud to see another governor joining California and the growing number of states not looking to Washington for leadership anymore."

Under Schwarzenegger, California has instituted the toughest antipollution measures in the country, and on Friday, Crist signed executive orders that would reduce Florida's greenhouse gas emissions by 10 percent in five years, and by 40 percent by 2025. Crist pledged to partner with Germany and the United Kingdom "in calling for a post-Kyoto Protocol that protects the planet's climate systems by reducing emissions of greenhouse gases beyond 2012." Florida will also begin measuring its greenhouse gas emissions, and according to the Los Angeles Times, will pursue renewable energy sources like solar and wind, and "compel civil servants to use fuel-efficient vehicles and 'green' offices."

The Washington Post reports that Crist said he and Florida would join California if the state decides to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to force it to enforce stricter emission standards for automobiles.

Speaking before a crowd of several hundred representatives from industry, government and environmental groups across the globe, Schwarzenegger said, "There is no Democratic planet Earth. There is no Republican planet Earth. There's just a planet Earth, and we all have a responsibility to take care of it."

Julia Dahl

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