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Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Edwards proposes 'aggressive but achievable' energy plan

Edwards is proposing a plan to reduce carbon dioxide emissions 80 percent by 2050.

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Declaring global warming a "huge emergency" that could lead to the "migration of millions and millions of people," former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards proposed an energy plan on CNN Tuesday that aims in part to reduce carbon dioxide emissions 80 percent by the year 2050.

"[It] is aggressive but achievable," Edwards said on CNN's American Morning. "If we do it the right way by auctioning off the right to emit carbon dioxide we can help transform the economy in America to a new energy economy and create jobs -- probably create over a million jobs."(Watch Video: Edwards explains his energy plan)

Edwards, a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, also proposed reducing electricity consumption 20 percent by the year 2025 through tax incentives and subsidies.

"We need to ask Americans to be patriotic about things beyond war," he said. "That includes being willing to conserve the strength in their country."

Edwards, who is in the process of building a 28,000 square foot compound in North Carolina, also brushed aside questions that he personally was not practicing energy efficiency, saying the home is "extraordinarily energy efficient."

"We use solar to power part of the energy needs of our house and, I might add, we have, Elizabeth and myself and my family, we've committed to operate this house in a carbon neutral way which means in addition to using energy saving devices in the house itself, to the extent that doesn't cover it, we'll purchase carbon credits on the market," he said.

Edwards is slated to tour an energy plant in Nevada, Iowa later Tuesday.

-- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
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