The EPA’s War on Electricity

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) seems to be given a never-ending authority to interfere in a critical part of the U.S. infrastructure—electrical generation. The pretext is the classification of CO2 as a pollutant, despite the fact that this naturally occurring trace gas has a small benign effect on the climate and a very large good effect on the all vegetation.

It all started back in 1988 when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was created as a program of the UN in no small part due to the endeavors of billionaire Maurice Strong, a self-declared socialist. He desired to give the UN international authority to tax businesses in developed nations and redistribute massive amounts of wealth to developing countries under the guise of penalties for pollution. A regime of wealth redistribution is a socialist utopia that has never gained traction in public opinion. One wonders why Strong just didn’t give his own money to developing nations.

“Strong and his allies at the UN gave the IPCC a very narrow brief by defining climate change in the Framework Convention on Climate Change, Article 1.2, as ‘a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere, and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.’ IPCC’s mandate is not to study climate change ‘in the round,’ or to look at natural as well as man-made influences on climate. It is to specifically find and report a human impact on climate, and thereby make a scientific case for the adoption of national and international policies that would supposedly reduce that impact.”’1

By this definition, the human race is doomed.

The EPA has relied heavily upon reports produced by the United Nations’ IPCC, along with the fifth and most recent report produced in September of 2013. With CO2 being declared a pollutant under these conditions, it is disconcerting to say the least, that the EPA would even entertain the idea of utilizing the IPCC’s study, unless it had a similar agenda.

In 2007, the Supreme Court decided that CO2 was a major pollutant based on the definition given it by the EPA’s presentation based on the IPCC’s report giving broad regulatory powers to the EPA to regulate power plant emissions. This has all but stopped the building of new electrical generating plants with the exception of hydro and nuclear plants, both of which have their own problems with EPA regulations.

Not satisfied with the closure of over 150 coal-generating plants, the Supreme Court has now concluded that the EPA can regulate plant emissions that travel across state lines. With CO2 labeled a pollutant, a new interpretation from the 2011 Cross-State Air Pollution Rule will effectively strangle an additional 1,000 plants in 28 Eastern states forcing them to adopt new emissions standards, reduce operations or close down completely. Before the Obama administration, coal plants provided 50 percent of the nation’s energy and is currently providing 27.3 percent in 2014.2 In spite of billions of dollars of taxpayer-funded aid, wind and solar only produce 1 percent of all energy.

With the all-out war against traditional generating plants, there is no viable alternative to closing down traditional power without seriously impacting the capacity of American industry and skyrocketing energy costs. Couple this with the poor performing, taxpayer-subsidized “green energy” and Americans will soon see government-managed electricity become intermittent and priced unaffordable.

According to the chairman for the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, Dr. Craig Idso, “You can look at thousands of studies – real world data studies that have actually been conducted that demonstrate beyond any doubt that higher levels of CO2 are going to increase the productivity of plants. One of the overall important findings of our report is that atmospheric CO2 is not a pollutant, it is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that offers many biosphereric benefits.”3

The Heartland Institute’s Senior Fellow for Environmental Policy, James M. Taylor said “It is a shame that the U.S. Supreme Court continues to empower EPA to issue nonsensical interpretations of statutes with the primary goal of amassing more money and power.”4 EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy proclaimed this new interpretation to be a “resounding victory for public health and a key component of EPA’s efforts to make sure all Americans have clean air to breathe.”5

Stifling business with overbearing government regulations costing end users substantial increases is one of the effects of socialist mandates, and labeling CO2 as a pollutant is a sure way to get there. The EPA actually does acknowledge positive impacts from higher CO2 concentrations; faster growing trees prevents deforestation and marshes grow more quickly providing protection against oceanic storm damage. It just keeps renaming the problem to fit the agenda; global cooling, global warming, climate change and now for the latest ghost to chase—climate disruption.

The EPA is strangling the American energy infrastructure by alleging that man-made CO2 is the culprit causing “global warming.” Meanwhile, the rest of the world is not buying in to the farce. China is building a coal-fired power plant every week and surpassed the U.S. in CO2 emissions by 2006, now producing over 40 percent worldwide.

India has assembled its own climate institute to examine purported claims and policy recommendations made by the IPCC and increased its CO2 emissions by 9 percent in 2009. Japan has withdrawn from the Kyoto accord completely with Russia, Brazil, South Korea, South Africa and Canada, thus questioning the hallowed thesis of man-made global warming.

There is no one that would deny that clean air and water are essential to America, but so is the rule of law and a constitutional government. Faced with many failed eco-summits, radical environmentalists have not taken defeat lightly and are using any means possible to pursue their agenda. Now they have been reinvigorated by the Supreme Court’s recent interpretation of the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule that gives the EPA broad powers to wage a veritable war on electricity.

Footnotes

  1. http://unfccc.int/essential_background/convention/background/items/2536.php
  2. https://www.americaspower.org/sites/default/files/Coal_Facts_July_2013.pdf
  3. http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/penny-starr/report-co2-not-pollutant-provides-beneficial-impacts-planet
  4. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/05/prweb11809641.htm
  5. http://www.lcv.org/media/blog/april-victories-for-public.html

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