NM Emissions Battle

New Mexico – The New Mexico Environmental Improvement Board is taking testimony from dozens of people as it considers a petition asking for state regulations that would reduce global warming pollution over the next decade.

New Energy Economy, the group that filed the petition, says the board has authority under existing law to implement statewide limits on greenhouse gas emissions.

Industry groups, some state lawmakers and others disagree.

Democrat Sen. David Ulibarri of Grants testified at the start of Monday's hearing that lawmakers are already having a difficult time balancing the state budget and a cap on greenhouse gas emissions would be a "potential disaster" for New Mexico.

Supporters argue that failure to impose a cap could lead to higher health and environmental costs.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.