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Global Warming Debate Heats Up

Thursday, April 12, 2007

It's not something we'll want to brag about, but California is number one; number one in emissions from cars and trucks - that from an environmental group which re-crunched years of EPA numbers. Of course, we're also number one in the number of cars and trucks. All these things go into the global warming debate - a debate that is far from dead.

The fifteen years from 1990 to 2004 were bad for the environment. That's according to a Los Angeles-based environmental group that says carbon dioxide pollution in the U.S. increased 18-percent over that time period.

Moira Chapin: "This report is a wake-up call to Congress to follow California's lead and to cap our global warming pollutions."

"Environment California Research and Public Policy Center" came to San Francisco Thursday to announce the results of its analysis of Department of Energy data. The group says it shows that coal-fired power plants and car and truck emissions are the biggest offenders. California is number one in the nation for global warning vehicle emissions for 2004, and third nationwide for the entire period between 1990 and 2004. But California is also leading the nation in emissions legislation.

Governor Schwarzanegger: "We are going to change the dynamic on greenhouse gas and on carbon emissions we are taking actions ourselves, we are not waiting for the federal government."

Steven Hayward, Pacific Research Institute: "I think Vice President Gore and others way exaggerate both the severity of the problem and what we actually know about the problem."

Steven Hayward is a fellow with San Francisco-based conservative think-tank the Pacific Research Institute. He has been issuing an environmental report for 10 years, for the last four he's included a section on climate change. And now he's made a film, "An Inconvenient Truth, or Convenient Fiction?"

Scene from "An Inconvenient Truth, or Convenient Fiction?": "Perhaps Gore's most disturbing claim is that climate change is not a political issue, but a moral issue."

In his film, Hayward takes aim at former Vice President Al Gore's film "An Inconvenient Truth." He says though Gore is right about many things, he goes too far in predictions of doom.

Steven Hayward, Pacific Research Institute: "I resent the fact hat he's trying to close off the debate by saying that there are no important uncertainties, and that people who dissent from his point of view are climate change deniers, which has the suggestion that you're like a holocaust denier or worse."

The film debuts Thursday night in San Francisco.

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