By Associated Press - Thursday, January 23, 2020

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - A New Hampshire House committee has held the first hearing for a bill to create a plan to reduce emissions statewide.

The House Science, Technology and Energy Committee met to discuss how the state could lower greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 to 80% below the levels of 1990, New Hampshire Public Radio reported Tuesday.

The state representative who proposed the bill, Craig Thompson, says the idea came from a constituent who asked him what the House’s approach to the climate crisis was.

“When I thought about it, I had to tell him, we don’t seem to have one, nor do we seem to have one as a state,” Thompson said.

How the state enforces any legislation needs to be ironed out, said Michael Fitzgerald, the assistant director of the Air Resources Division at the state Department of Environmental Services.

“We don’t believe that we have sufficient direction in here to know where to direct any type of enforcement effort,” Fitzgerald said.

This would be the first law focused on reducing state emissions, the publication reported.

Thompson said the bills, which address issues like vehicle mileage standards, do not go far enough in addressing climate change.

“All of those individual issues are piecemeal approach to climate change if we don’t have a specific goal in mind and a specific goal codified into law,” Thompson said.

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