Ironic as it may seem, state and regional efforts to limit the emission of greenhouse gases might delay the passage of federal regulations mandating reductions. "The biggest issue is how do we incorporate all these state regimes into a federal program," said carbon market expert Peter Fusaro, a founder of New York-based Global Change Associates.
Nine Midwestern states linked up last month to become the third U.S. regional coalition committed to fighting climate change through emissions reductions. When the 10 eastern and five western states already committed to emissions reduction are included, nearly half of all Americans now live in areas covered by agreements to combat global warming.
According to Jonathan Black, a staff assistant for Democratic Senator Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico, many members of Congress will have a tough time selling their constituents back home on weak federal legislation superceding their own tougher state laws. "As time goes...