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Comprehensive Greenhouse Gas Measurement

A publicly accessible comprehensive carbon inventory is a necessary condition for a rigorous regime of international compliance.

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President Barack Obama announced at the September opening of the United Nations in New York City that the EPA will also launch a program for the comprehensive measurement and regulation of greenhouse gases. Under a proposed rule, EPA would require 10,000 industrial sites and petroleum product suppliers to track their emission levels beginning in January 2010 and report the data beginning in 2011. The reporting would cover some 85 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

The significance of this action cannot be overestimated. If the United States is to join a binding international treaty on limiting emissions, it needs to demonstrate capacity to be as compliant as any other signatory party. A publicly accessible comprehensive carbon inventory is a necessary condition for a rigorous regime of international compliance and a step toward insuring that our allies can make sure we are meeting our commitments.

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