Thursday, December 20, 2007

EPA Stonewalling

Shrub's corporate masters are using the EPA to stonewall California and 16 other states emission standards. Can you say "states rights?"

WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday denied California and 16 other states the right to set their own standards for carbon dioxide
emissions from automobiles.

The decision immediately provoked a heated debate over its scientific basis and whether political pressure was applied by the automobile industry to help it escape the proposed California regulations. Officials from the states and numerous environmental groups vowed to sue to overturn the edict.

This really is just a stalling game, as the states will most likely, based on precedent, win in the federal courts.

The 17 states — including New York, New Jersey and Connecticut — had waited two years for the Bush administration to issue a ruling on an application to set stricter air quality standards than those adopted by the federal government. The decision, technically known as a Clean Air Act waiver, was the first time California was refused permission to impose its own pollution rules; the federal government had previously granted the state more than 50 waivers.

The emissions standards California proposed in 2004 — but never approved by the federal government — would have forced automakers to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent in new cars and light trucks by 2016, with the cutbacks to begin in 2009 models.

The California attorney general, Edmund G. Brown Jr., called the decision “absurd.” He said the decision ignored a long history of waivers granted California to deal with its special topographical, climate and transportation circumstances, which require tougher air quality standards than those set nationally.

Mr. Brown noted that federal courts in California and Vermont upheld the California standards this year against challenges by the auto industry.

Way back when 'ol Dick Nixon created the "Environmental Protection Agency", he was actually thinking about the "environment." It was among the few good things Nixon ever did. But St. Ronnie and shrub have turned it into the "Corporate Protection Agency." The states are going to win this one after a long court battle, but the corporations will gain time to continue profiting off of pollution. Why do the right thing for the planet when there is money to be made?

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