Federal legislation meant to ease the pressure of energy on the environment is meeting real resistance in Missouri, because of our reliance on coal.

Missouri Farm Bureau President Charlie Kruse says the bureau has taken its opposition to cap and trade to the State Fair.

"We’re doing everything we can to say this is a bad idea and one that this country doesn’t need," Kruse says.

The bureau is asking fairgoers to sign a petition against cap and trade which has passed the House and awaits Senate action in Washington, D. C. Kruse says Missouri will lose out, because it relies on coal, which the legislation seeks to phase out.

"The United States is the Saudi Arabia when it comes to coal," says Kruse.

Kruse says work to develop clean coal is on-going. He says more should be done to make the burning of coal less harmful to the environment. He says that will make the United States less dependent on energy from countries that oppose the U.S.

How much the legislation will cost is a matter of dispute, but a study by the Energy Department estimates a typical household will pay $83 more a year if the legislation passes, $142 by 2020 and $583 by 2030. The report stated the bill would add 20 cents to a gallon of gas by 2020 and 35 cents to a gallon by 2030.

Kruse expect it to hit farmers hard, despite assurances otherwise.

"When you look at all the things farmers have to buy that are so energy intensive, I just don’t believe that what little positive might come out of this for farmers will offset the increased cost," Kruse says.

The Energy Department report cautions that costs could be much higher if large-scale technologies aren’t developed to keep electricity prices in check.

Download/listen Brent Martin reports (1:30 MP3)