The Global Warming Solutions Act being considered in Maryland would require businesses across the state to cut their average emissions of pollutants that cause global warming by 25 percent by 2020 and by 90 percent by 2050, The Baltimore Sun reports.
Gary Curtis, a vice president of NewPage, the largest industrial employer in Western Maryland, said the limits “would basically put us out of business.” According to Curtis, the company would have to replace coal with natural gas – which costs five times as much. Wind or solar power, he said, are too unreliable. New Page rolls out 1,530 tons a day of magazine-quality paper used for catalogs and other publications.
“We need to move into a much more sustainable future or else we cease to exist as a species,” the article quotes Gov. Martin O’Malley, a supporter of the proposal, as saying. “People can talk about the increased cost of things. But what sort of increased costs will come from a four-foot rise in sea level.”
“It makes absolutely no sense to allow us to burn no coal here in Maryland – but allow our Chinese competition to burn coal to make the exact same product,” Thomas Caldwell, a 39-year veteran worker at the plant and president of the U.S. Steelworkers Union local that represents plant employees, says in the article.