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Md. And N.J. Governors Fight Over Cap-And-Trade Program

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Tommy Landers of Environment Maryland speaks at the release of a report on the state's efforts regarding climate change at Fells Point in Baltimore.
Matt Bush
Tommy Landers of Environment Maryland speaks at the release of a report on the state's efforts regarding climate change at Fells Point in Baltimore.

At the start of next year, New Jersey will no longer take part in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) after Republican Gov. Chris Christie called it a failure, saying it does nothing more than tax electricity and citizens.

That brought an immediate response from one of his political rivals, Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) who said the program has led to a drop in carbon dioxide emissions in the state equivalent to nearly 3,500 cars being taken off the road.

Tommy Landers, with the group Environment Maryland, says the future for RGGI is clouded.

"If those power plants are not participating, then those emissions will not be reduced. We'll see exactly what effect it is going to have," he says.

A report from Environment Maryland states that RGGI is the only program statewide that is curbing greenhouse gas emissions at a rate that will allow Maryland to reach its goal of reducing them by 25 percent over the next decade.

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