CPR's Mendelson in NYT 'Debate' on CO2 Regulation

by Matthew Freeman

February 19, 2009

CPR Member Scholar Nina Mendelson has a piece today in The New York Times's "Room for Debate" feature on the news that EPA is working its way toward regulating carbon dioxide emissions under the Clean Air Act.  As The Times quite directly and correctly puts it, "Under orders from the Supreme Court, which the Bush administration ignored, President Obama’s new head of the Environmental Protection Agency is expected to determine" whether CO2 should be regulated.  Among those joining the Times debate is John Graham, former Bush administration "regulatory czar."  (He's opposed to regulating, not surprisingly.)  Mendelson writes:

The announcement by Lisa Jackson, the Environmental Protection Agency’s administrator, that she will determine whether greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare seems a welcome signal that the agency will respond to the urgency of global warming. As a legal matter, Ms. Jackson probably has little choice.  The E.P.A. has been charged for decades with regulating air pollutants under the Clean Air Act. As the Supreme Court recognized in Massachusetts v. the Environmental Protection Agency, greenhouse gases are such air pollutants. An endangerment determination would confirm the agency’s power, but also its obligation, to regulate greenhouse gases now.Indeed, the agency should begin by setting performance standards to reduce greenhouse gases from new major stationary sources, like coal-fired electric utilities and industrial facilities, and from new motor vehicles.

 

As a policy matter, there are excellent reasons to have the E.P.A. move ahead, rather than awaiting congressional action. While the regulatory process may not be nimble, agency experts have already done considerable preparation. And Congress may trail the agency. Senator Barbara Boxer, a Democrat from California who chairs the relevant Senate committee, has already announced that she does not expect a Senate vote on climate change legislation before 2010. Delay would be environmentally costly.

Read the full piece, here.

 

 

 

Be the first to comment on this entry.
We ask for your email address so that we may follow up with you, ask you to clarify your comment in some way, or perhaps alert you to someone else's response. Only the name you supply and your comment will be displayed on the site to the public. Our blog is a forum for the exchange of ideas, and we hope to foster intelligent, interesting and respectful discussion. We do not apply an ideological screen, however, we reserve the right to remove blog posts we deem inappropriate for any reason, but particularly for language that we deem to be in the nature of a personal attack or otherwise offensive. If we remove a comment you've posted, and you want to know why, ask us (info@progressivereform.org) and we will tell you. If you see a post you regard as offensive, please let us know.

Also from Matthew Freeman

Media relations consultant Matthew Freeman helps coordinate CPR's media outreach efforts and manage its online communications. His media relations experience in Washington spans more than 30 years, and his client list includes a range of organizations active on the environment, education, civil rights and liberties, health care, progressive organizing in the interfaith community, and more.

A Final 2017 Dose of Op-Eds

Freeman | Dec 28, 2017 | Regulatory Policy

Steinzor: Trump's reform won't stop mass incarceration

Freeman | Dec 21, 2017 | Good Government

Trump's Newspeak

Freeman | Dec 19, 2017 | Good Government

An Antidote to Greed

Freeman | Nov 28, 2017 | Good Government

CPR's Latest Op-Eds Take on the Assault on Our Safeguards

Freeman | Oct 16, 2017 | Regulatory Policy

The Center for Progressive Reform

455 Massachusetts Ave., NW, #150-513
Washington, DC 20001
info@progressivereform.org
202.747.0698

© Center for Progressive Reform, 2015