By Dan Shapley
As Science Matures, Need For Reduction Becomes More Clear By Dan Shapley News Editor
On the eve of the Live Earth concert, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-California) said Al Gore's call for a 90% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions may be necessary to curb global warming. The percentage goes beyond her own bill in the Senate, which calls for 80% reductions and goes far beyond any of her colleagues' proposals. A logjam in the Senate that had prevented serious discussion of carbon limits was broken only recently in the Senate, when Sen. John Warner, the ranking Republican on Boxer's Environment and Public Works Committee, agreed to discuss legislation that would set an economy-wide cap on carbon emissions. "We''re learning as time goes on, and more and more reports come out, the dire nature of this issue," Boxer said, referring to scientific reports showing the speed of global warming's effects on polar caps and glaciers accelerating beyond what scientists had projected. "My own bill goes to 80 ... We all need to look at this new number (90%), which appears as if it''s on target, because obviously the developed countries will have to do a little more than the others." Technological innovation, she said during a conference call with reporters, would have to drive the country to the goal, along with energy efficiency measures. That the push toward a new energy economy could create a "green collar industry" full of jobs that cannot be outsourced, she added. About 30% of America's carbon emissions -- which lead the world on a per capita basis -- come from transportation, 40% from electric power generation and about 30% from buildings and other sources. "The important point is we have to act very very soon because the more we put it off, the more we have to do," Boxer said. "Do we have to work really hard to get where we have to get? Yes. Can we do it? This is America. Yes."