Associated Press

WHITEFISH, Mont. (AP) -- Governors from Western states say new transmission lines are critical to developing alternative energy that will be needed in the coming years.

The governors are meeting to recognize that climate change poses real threats and that the development of more renewable energy will require more transmission lines.

The governors say they need to find a way to fast track expensive and long transmission lines to carry wind and solar power from the rural West to the large urban areas.

Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer says that without new lines, there won't be much more new energy developed.

But a fight over the placement of such lines looms. Environmentalists don't want them running through national forests, and not all private landowners want them running overhead.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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