Monday, July 10, 2006

Global Warming to the Supreme Court

The political debate over the existence, degree, source and danger of global warming has captured a spot on the United States Supreme Court agenda. Initiated in Massachusetts, Attorney Generals in twelve states are suing the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for not regulating carbon dioxide.
Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Reilly: "Delay has serious potential consequences," the petition states. "Given that air pollutants associated with climate change are accumulating in the atmosphere at an alarming rate, the window of opportunity in which we can mitigate the dangers of climate change is rapidly closing."
The litigation centers upon whether wording of EPA regulations gives the agency broad authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions and relies heavily on a 1998 opinion by a General Counsel of the EPA under President Clinton.
EPA's Authority to Regulate Pollutants: Section 302(g) defines air pollutant" as any air pollution agent or combination of such agents, including any physical, chemical, biological, [or] -radioactive . . . substance or matter which is emitted into or otherwise enters the ambient air. Such term includes any precursors to the formation of any air pollutant, to the extent that the Administrator has identified such precursor or precursors for the particular purpose for which the term "air pollutant" is used.
Marlo Lewis writing last April for National Review Online concisely explains why environmental socialists have carefully selected carbon dioxide as the scapegoat to be demonized and banished, as much as possible in the private sector, from western society.
Crazy on Carbon Dioxide: Carbon dioxide is the inescapable combustion byproduct of gasoline and other carbon-based fuels. …The power to restrict CO2 emissions is literally the power to cripple U.S. productivity, competitiveness, and growth.
This entirely political skirmish continues while Real Science, written without the intention to scare people, continues to establish there is nothing to fear from a molecule essential to life. Let us hope our Supreme Court Justices have the common sense to understand a natural component of air is not an unnatural addition to air.

The Background Overview of the legal history charts this latest attempt to override congressional and administrative decisions and Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) calls it correctly.
Inhofe Reacts: “Unfortunately, those who have failed to impose their draconian ideology through legislation are now trying to use the courts to overturn the will of Congress.”