Fla. Gov. warms to climate change

July 12, 2007

California and Florida already have similar climates and soon they will have similar policies on climate change.

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist opened a star-studded, two-day climate change summit in Miami Thursday, the Miami Herald reported.

At the end of the conference, Crist said he will sign three executive orders limiting greenhouse-gas emissions for cars and trucks, encouraging environmentally-friendly homes and upping the state's purchases of alternative energy.

The policies are modeled after those already enacted by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger who, like Crist, is a Republican.

Though more than 20 states already have environmental policies, environmental advocates say the addition of Florida could add enough clout to encourage highly polluting countries like China and India to reduce emissions.

For his part, Crist has committed to reducing the environmental impact of his own lifestyle. He drives an ethanol-powered car and said he is looking into solar panels for his home.

The governor, however, faces an uphill political battle, the Herald said.

State GOP lawmakers have said climate change should not be a priority, while Democrats warn that implementing the changes will be difficult and costly.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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