Legal challenges by states and industry groups over the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) efforts to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases could and should be decided in the challengers’ favor. Whether that will happen in this highly politicized, semi-scientific matter of “dangerous manmade global warming and climate change” remains to be seen.
Regardless of the D.C. Court of Appeals’ recent decision in ATK Launch Systems, Inc. v. EPA, the case will almost assuredly return to the Supreme Court, where the outcome is equally uncertain.
In Massachusetts v. EPA, the Supreme Court said EPA had the authority (but not the obligation) to regulate CO2 under the Clean Air Act’s “capacious definition of air pollutant.” EPA could do so, the court ruled, if its administrator concluded that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions “may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare.” In other words, the administrator’s opinion was not sufficient. The agency must conduct a scientific study and make a convincing scientific case for taking action.
Not surprisingly, Administrator Lisa Jackson decided that CO2 does endanger public health and welfare, and signaled her intention to regulate these emissions. However, there are serious problems with this.
First, EPA conducted no original research of its own. Relying on work by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other agencies, it merely selected existing studies and reports that supported its predetermined outcome — and ignored numerous studies that contradicted its decision.
Read the rest of this editorial at NetRightDaily.
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