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Boston and Beyond

July 5, 2013

Industry panning Obama's climate change push

(Continued)

“Everybody wants to live in a clean and healthy environment. Everybody wants industry to do their best,” Douglass said. “We share, I think, more than we disagree about the need for a clean environment. But, you know, we have questions about some of the conclusions that have been reached and the direction that those conclusions are leading us in. Is this really the right thing to do? We’re not sure.”

While West Virginia has more than 20 coal-fired plants, New Hampshire has just two.

With roughly 100 employees, New Hampshire’s biggest coal-fired plant, Merrimack Station, is “in a rough place,” according to Tim Sink, president of the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s just seems like they’re being forced into a place where they may close the plant,” he said.

Asked whether his company may close Merrimack Station, Long said, “That’s an open question.”

“We don’t know the detail yet,” Long continued, wondering aloud whether the state’s natural gas and oil facilities would be affected. “We know that it’s going to lead to a lot of litigation and uncertainty.”

Energy officials may be the most vocal critics of the president’s push to crack down on global warming, but strong majorities of Americans polled say global warming is a problem.

An AP-GfK poll conducted last November found that 78 percent of Americans — including 70 percent of Republicans — believe the world’s temperature has been rising over the last 100 years. If nothing is done to reduce global warming in the future, it will become a serious problem for the United States, said 80 percent of Americans — and 61 percent of Republicans.

About 97 percent of climate scientists around the world who study and publish on the issue agree the world is warming, it is caused by the burning of fossil fuels, and it is a major environmental problem.

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