Utah is not the only Western state that is rejecting the left’s global warming regulation policies. This week Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) signed an executive order stating that Arizona will not endorse any emission-control plan that could raise costs for consumers and businesses. The Arizona Republic reports:
Arizona will no longer participate in a groundbreaking attempt to limit greenhouse-gas emissions across the West, a change in policy by Gov. Jan Brewer that will include a review of all the state’s efforts to combat climate change.
State officials said the policy shift was rooted in concerns that the controversial emissions plan would slow the state’s economic recovery.
The governor’s order is another blow to the Western Climate Initiative, a group of seven states and four Canadian provinces that joined forces in 2007 after growing impatient with the federal government to address climate change.
The economic costs of cap and trade for the nation as a whole are bad enough. A study by The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis found that a national cap and trade program would make the United States about $9.4 trillion poorer by 2035. Much of this decline would be from reduced economic productivity and job loss. Under the House legislation there would be 1.15 million fewer jobs on average than without a cap-and-trade bill. And as Heritage fellow Ben Lieberman has testified, Western states would be particularly hard hit:
Coal mining will be very hard-hit, so Montana and Wyoming and other coal-producing states will see this important sector of their economies shrink significantly. Western oil and natural gas producers will face higher costs as well. The promise of oil shale in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming will never be realized under Waxman-Markey. As I mentioned, agriculture is hard-hit, and that particularly includes things common in parts of the West that are not well positioned to partially defray their costs by availing themselves of offsets, like ranching on federal lands, fruits and vegetables, and potatoes. And of course the long distances rural Westerners have to drive in the course of each day means that gasoline and diesel price increases hurt them more than other Americans.
Read more from The Heritage Foundation at The Foundry