State-level efforts to curb greenhouse-gas emissions, such as the proposed adoption of a low-carbon fuel standard by 11 governors from the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, act as "laboratories for the rest of the country," said Anna Aurilio, an executive at Environment America. While such initiatives could show that climate-change measures do not necessarily burden the economy, she said, Congress still needs to pass a bill that applies to all states and offers steeper emissions cuts than what some states are planning.

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