EPA: Climate Crisis Calls For Urgent Action

U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has formally determined that greenhouse gas pollution imperils the health and well-being of present and future generations, setting the stage for U.S. action as officials from worldwide gathered in Copenhagen last week to forge an international solution to global warming.

“The danger of global warming pollution is clear and present, the solutions are at hand, and the time for action is now,” said Fred Krupp, President of Environmental Defense Fund. “It’s time for Congress to finish its work on U.S. legislation to cap and reduce the 19 million tons of heat-trapping pollution we emit every day. American leadership on climate change will strengthen our security, wean us off of foreign oil, and ensure that America wins the race to clean energy innovation in the global market place.”

Today’s action is required by a landmark 2007 U.S. Supreme Court decision rejecting the Bush EPA’s “laundry list” of reasons not to address global warming pollution under the nation’s clean air laws. The endangerment finding issued today covers six greenhouse gases that drive climate change: carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, and sulfur hexafluoride.

Policy Solutions, Not Scare-Tactics. EPA’s announcement is a wake up call for legislative action by the U.S. Senate that will reduce global warming pollution and expand America’s clean energy economy. But some seek to delay progress and avoid accountability using scare tactics, absurdly claiming that EPA action will result in a "cow tax." The reality is that EPA recently took action to shield small sources from liability, proposing a 25,000 ton annual carbon dioxide threshold for regulation. The 25,000 ton threshold is the amount of pollution emitted from the annual energy use of about 2,200 homes, approximately 58,000 barrels of oil consumed, or 130 railcars of coal.

Order from the U.S. Supreme Court. In 2003, the Bush EPA denied a 1999 petition to establish greenhouse gas emission standards for motor vehicles under the nation’s clean air laws. The Bush EPA claimed it had no power to limit global warming pollution, expressly reversing prior EPA legal opinions that had affirmed the Agency’s authority to address greenhouse gases. On April 2, 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected EPA’s “laundry list of reasons not to regulate” greenhouse gas emissions and instructed EPA to make a decision about the threat of global warming pollution.

Abrupt Climate Impacts, Threats to Human Health. EPA’s extensive review of the science, conducted as part of its “endangerment” determination, documents: (1) abrupt climate change impacts including the potential deglaciation of the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets and associated effects on sea level rise; (2) the climate-related human health perils for the poor, the elderly, the disabled, and the uninsured, and (3) the expected climate-induced rise in smog pollution and heat-related deaths in major regions of the country.

Pollution Has Soared. EPA’s action is long overdue. Since citizens petitioned EPA to address global warming pollution in 1999, the nation has discharged nearly 70 billion tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and heat-trapping carbon dioxide concentrations have soared to 385 parts per million.

Leave a Reply

2 comments on “EPA: Climate Crisis Calls For Urgent Action

  1. Doesn’t this concern everybody in the agriculture industry? The mere fact that CO2, the air we exhale, will be governed by the EPA essentially allows the EPA to avoid going through Congress to regulate it, thus making the Cap and Trade bill almost meaningless.

    This will severely cripple the ag industry. The decision was based on politics and not science. We do extensive reporting on this on my site http://www.habledash.com. People in the ag industry are stewards of the environment and this latest EPA regulation just sets a precedent for further control over the private sector.

  2. Mr. Justice is absolutely correct. Furthermore, EPA’s gesture of proposing a 25,000 ton annual CO2 threshold to protect “smaller polluters” from liability is a thinly veiled ruse. Once this regulatory juggernaut gets rolling full speed on this issue, it’s a virtual certainly they will look to micro-manage CO2 emissions from all conceivable angles and sources. It seems very plausible that we (every American, farmers and non-farmers alike) could be looking at a future where we’ll see dubious “carbon offset” fees or some other “penalty tax” applied to every purchase of fuel, every electric bill, and every tractor, combine or vehicle purchase. And heaven help large volume livestock producers, who will face double-barreled scrutiny with regard to both carbon dioxide and methane emissions. And toss in some regulatory fees for nitrous oxide emissions if you happen to produce silage. The vast majority of people involved in American agriculture care deeply for the land, air and water. We work hard within the framework of the private sector to derive a living from these resources while simultaneously protecting and improving them for future generations. The sledgehammer-wielding tactics EPA threatens to use in this matter portend a future of reduced agricultural productivity and profitability, food shortages and crumbling economic stability…all in the name of fraudulent science.

Featured Stories

CropLife 100Two Iowa-Based Ag Co-ops To Merge
August 27, 2014
The Board of Directors and management of United Western Coop, Missouri Valley, IA has completed a merger with Heartland Co-op, West Des Moines, IA, effective September 1, 2014. Read More
MAGIE 2014 ShowStopper
EquipmentJohn Deere Again Wins MAGIE ShowStopper Award
August 25, 2014
For the second consecutive year, John Deere was honored at the Midwest AG Industries Exposition (MAGIE) for its new R4045 sprayer. Read More
Eric SfiligojMAGIE 2014: A ShowStopping Event
August 8, 2014
The kick-off to the summer show season, Midwest AG Industries Exposition (MAGIE), takes place next week in Bloomington, IL. Read More
EmployeesAsmark Institute Dedicates New Training Center To Ford West
August 6, 2014
The Asmark Institute plans to recognize the retired industry leader's years of service to the fertilizer industry at the new state-of-the-art facility in Owensboro, KY. Read More

Trending Articles

ManagementExpert To Discuss Farmland Value, Rent At Farm Science Review
August 18, 2014
While cropland values in Ohio increased in the past two years, they have remained flat in 2014, declining in some cases, according to an Ohio State University agricultural economist. Read More
EquipmentAdvance Your Technology IQ At MAGIE
August 13, 2014
The Midwest AG Industries Exposition (August 20-21) is the place you need to be to see, study and evaluate how new advances in the equipment, operations, crop protection and fertility sectors can help your business prosper. Read More
HerbicidesScouting Key To Next Season’s Soybean Herbicide Program
August 12, 2014
When growing soybeans, growers need to think ahead to stay one step ahead of weeds. That means examining weed threats and evaluating which herbicides work best. Read More
StewardshipMichigan Agriculture Leaders On Toledo Water Ban: We Want To Be Part Of The Conversation
August 8, 2014
Leaders of Michigan agricultural organizations said Thursday that the government should not have a “knee-jerk reaction” based on last weekend’s water ban in Toledo due to fertilizer run-off in Lake Erie. Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Acquires Lemon Ag Services
August 4, 2014
The acquisition of Lemon Ag fits BRANDT’s aggressive corporate strategy of providing superior agronomic advice and services for customers in central Illinois. Read More
Eric SfiligojThe Resurgence Of Crop Protection
August 4, 2014
Plenty of new offerings over the next few years should see a rebirth for the crop protection products category in terms of market share. Read More

Latest News

Webinars5 Key Benefits Of Attending A Webinar
September 2, 2014
Webinars can provide ag retailers with a convenient option for gaining knowledge on the latest industry issues and solutions. Read More
Crop InputsBASF Is Betting On A Bright Agricultural Future
September 1, 2014
The crop protection products giant is gearing up for a busy time in agriculture by investing in both product production and development over the next couple of years. Read More
Eric SfiligojAn Erie Feeling For Ag
September 1, 2014
Plenty of water issues have been in the news lately, including the continuing drought in California. Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Acquires California-Based Retailer
August 29, 2014
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings will acquire Kerman Ag Resources, Inc., which will operate under Pinnacle's Performance Agriculture brand. Read More
Allied Cooperative Grain Plant
ManagementArcadia Co-op To Merge With Allied Cooperative
August 28, 2014
Allied Cooperative has announced that members of Arcadia Co-op voted in favor of a merger with Allied Cooperative, paving the way for the consolidation which will be effective on December 1, 2014. Read More
InsecticidesBioinsecticide VENERATE Now Registered In California
August 27, 2014
Marrone Bio Innovations' VENERATE is a new tool to help California growers control crop-damaging insect pests, fight the development of insect resistance and reduce pesticide residues on fruits and vegetables. Read More
CropLife 100Two Iowa-Based Ag Co-ops To Merge
August 27, 2014
The Board of Directors and management of United Western Coop, Missouri Valley, IA has completed a merger with Heartland Co-op, West Des Moines, IA, effective September 1, 2014. Read More
FertilizerKoch Expands AGROTAIN Nitrogen Stabilizer Portfolio
August 26, 2014
Koch Agronomic Services, LLC has added two new innovative nitrogen stabilizers to the AGROTAIN product family – AGROTAIN ADVANCED and AGROTAIN DRI-­MAXX. Read More
Seed/BiotechDuPont To Build Two Seed Treatment Centers
August 26, 2014
DuPont has announced construction on two state-of-the-art centers dedicated to developing and testing seed treatment formulations, applications and seed handling techniques in an important step toward bringing new solutions to growers. Read More
Seed/BiotechLoveland Products Acquires A Controlling Interest In Ag…
August 26, 2014
Loveland Products, a subsidiary of Agrium , has announced the company has acquired a controlling interest in Agricen, a Dallas-area agricultural biotechnology company delivering biochemical-based products for efficient and sustainable plant nutrition. Read More
StewardshipUp Close Look At The 2014 Environmental Respect Award W…
August 25, 2014
The 2014 Environmental Respect Award winners were honored recently at the 24th annual event in Wilmington, DE. Read More
Eric SfiligojAg Science Rejection Carries Consequences
August 25, 2014
As innuendo and fear dog the regulatory process, agriculture can’t get the new tools it needs to combat world hunger. Read More
LegislationFarmers Dismayed As New Farm Bill Dumps Direct Payments
August 25, 2014
The threatened end of cash subsidies to the nation’s row crop farmers dates back through at least the last two iterations of national agriculture policy legislation. Read More
MAGIE 2014 ShowStopper
EquipmentJohn Deere Again Wins MAGIE ShowStopper Award
August 25, 2014
For the second consecutive year, John Deere was honored at the Midwest AG Industries Exposition (MAGIE) for its new R4045 sprayer. Read More
CropLife 100GROWMARK CEO To Retire
August 22, 2014
GROWMARK chief executive officer Jeff Solberg has announced his retirement effective September 15, 2014. Read More
InsecticidesDuPont’s Prevathon Approved For Dry Beans
August 22, 2014
DuPont Prevathon insect control powered by Rynaxypyr has received EPA registration for foliar use on dry bean crops, including dried shelled peas and beans. Read More
ManagementNCGA DuPont New Leaders Program Enters Sophmore Season
August 20, 2014
The National Corn Growers Association and DuPont are pleased to announce the second year of the NCGA DuPont New Leaders Program. Read More
FungicidesVerdesian Links Up With Mitsui, Hokusan
August 20, 2014
Mitsui Chemicals Agro, Inc., and Hokusan Co., announced the signing of an exclusive licensing agreement allowing Verdesian Life Sciences global access to its patented technology for suppressing mycotoxin contamination in wheat and barley. Read More