The Reasoned Review

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Senate Climate “Compromise”

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I guess I have to support pretty much anything we can get on the climate change front, and I admit this bill looks pretty good, despite Reuters’ obvious attempts to slander it. The gasoline tax is bound to cause inflation and more Tea Party unrest, but any climate legislation is to some extent inflationary, and I don’t think there’s very much that wouldn’t spark more Tea Party unrest at this point.

But I wanted to point out the one aspect of the bill Reuters mentioned that I think is a major mistake:

On Wednesday, a Senate source told Reuters the legislation would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating carbon dioxide emissions. It would also end state and regional carbon-trading programs, such as the one several Northeastern states participate in, to be replaced by a national carbon reduction policy.

One of the big benefits of the EPA is that it’s an Executive department, and thus its dictates don’t have to go through Congresses’ butchery to become implemented. As Christopher Parenti explains in exhaustive detail, the EPA already has the power to singlehandedly dictate carbon emissions via the Clean Air Act. Whatever this bill recommends will no doubt be much lighter on the pollution industry than whatever the EPA could have come up with.

In fact, given that the EPA had recently signaled it was going to move on climate change with or without Congress’ approval, the timing of this Bill, and its clauses that strip the EPA of most of its power, are suspect. That the current bill enormously benefits industry interests is undeniable.


Written by pavanvan

April 18, 2010 at 11:30 pm

Posted in environment

Tagged with ,

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