The EPA Finds Carbon Dioxide Poses A Danger

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued a finding that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases pose a danger to the public. 

Depending upon which side of the global warming debate you happen to occupy this is either very good or very bad news. For the time being it’s pretty much a non-event. Here’s the background.

Two years ago the Supreme Court found that carbon dioxide is a pollutant as defined by the Clean Air Act and therefore the EPA can regulate it. The Bush Administration simply ordered the EPA to do nothing with their new found power.

The Obama administration, as you know, is much more inclined to take steps to limit greenhouse gases. Their preference is to legislatively institute a cap and trade system and Congress is currently considering such a proposal. At this time, the proposals are at best moving slowly through Congress and approval is anything but certain.

The finding by the EPA gives the administration a pretty potent weapon it can use to force Congress to take action. Essentially, they can threaten regulatory action in the event that Congress refuses to act on the pending legislation. 

The administration doesn’t want to go the regulatory route for a couple of reasons. First, it would harden positions on both sides of the issue. Second, it can regulate emissions but it can’t institute a cap and trade system. The revenues for cap and trade are expected to fund a part of the administration’s health care initiative so their loss would represent a major setback to the administration.

The bottom line on this one is that the EPA finding probably ensures some sort of action on the part of Congress and probably along the lines of the administration’s proposals.

more: here 

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