Washington carbon emissions drops slightly in 2011

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SEATTLE (AP) - A new state report shows the state's greenhouse gas emissions dropped by about 4.6 percent between 2010 and 2011.

The latest data shows that about 92 million metric tons of carbon dioxide was released in 2011, compared to about 96 million metric tons the year before.

Emissions are on a downward trend, but still about 4 percent higher than in 1990.

The report comes as Gov. Jay Inslee is proposing sweeping policies to combat climate change, including a cap-and-trade program that would charge large industrial polluters for each metric ton of emissions they release.

Republican lawmakers say the cap-and-trade program would raise gas prices and hurt businesses and consumers, and many say that the state is already a low-carbon producing state because of its extensive hydropower.

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