Skip to comments.Cap and Sue
Posted on 07/12/2006 7:34:14 PM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
One of the great revolutions in environmental policy has been the adoption of the "cap-and-trade" method for controlling air pollution, starting with the 1990 Clean Air Act. The basic idea is to have the government set overall limits and let the market figure out how most efficiently to achieve the goal. And it has been a major success: Over the past 35 years U.S. energy consumption has increased by 48%, and population by 42%, while emissions of the six most common pollutants have decreased by 53%.
Yet that achievement is now threatened by federal, state and private lawsuits asking the courts to impose a command-and-control approach to air pollution by judicial fiat. The trouble started in the late 1990s when the Clinton Administration's Environmental Protection Agency seized on a clause that dates from the 1970s' Clean Air Act rules known as New Source Review. As the name suggests, everybody thought the rule required only genuinely "new" sources of pollution to install scrubbers and other specified control technologies.
But the Clinton EPA decided that a multitude of utilities and refineries were in violation of the rule because such maintenance as replacing turbines had created "new" sources of pollution -- never mind that these utilities were already operating within their cap-and-trade limits. The Bush Administration restored the pre-Clinton interpretation of NSR in 2003. But for fear of being labeled "anti-environment," it shrunk from abandoning the continuing Clinton-era NSR lawsuits, creating a legal limbo that hasn't been conducive to business certainty or the creation of new power supplies.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
The Bush administration's domestic policies have been a disaster with the exception of tax cuts, and without concommitant cuts is government spending, they push debt onto our kids.
"The Bush administration's domestic policies have been a disaster with the exception of tax cuts, and without concommitant cuts is government spending, they push debt onto our kids."
Shades of Poppy there, eh? But Dubya's not running again. History will have to count a few more years before a final evaluation. However, the number of vetoes is another pretty good sign you're right on the money.