Carbon Dioxide as a dangerous substance

Here is a big danger of our current governmental structure: If the Executive branch cannot get the legislature to pass the laws that it wants, it is still possible to get the same result by bypassing elected officials and having a bureaucratic agency issue regulations. From Business Fumes Over Carbon Dioxide Rule – WSJ.com:

Officials gather in Copenhagen this week for an international climate summit, but business leaders are focusing even more on Washington, where the Obama administration is expected as early as Monday to formally declare carbon dioxide a dangerous pollutant.

An "endangerment" finding by the Environmental Protection Agency could pave the way for the government to require businesses that emit carbon dioxide and five other greenhouse gases to make costly changes in machinery to reduce emissions — even if Congress doesn't pass pending climate-change legislation. EPA action to regulate emissions could affect the U.S. economy more directly, and more quickly, than any global deal inked in the Danish capital, where no binding agreement is expected.

Carbon dioxide as a dangerous substance! A substance necessary for life! This would make every human being who exhales–that is, who is alive–a polluter at every breath.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Jonathan

    Now there’s even more reason to tax carbonated beverages. First the fat tax, now the CO2 tax. No more diet coke for me, wah!

  • Jonathan

    Now there’s even more reason to tax carbonated beverages. First the fat tax, now the CO2 tax. No more diet coke for me, wah!

  • Carl Vehse

    Next, the EPA will say that life is dangerous ultimately resulting, on the average, in one death per person. The EPA will tax and regulate that danger in an attempt to reduce that number.

  • Carl Vehse

    Next, the EPA will say that life is dangerous ultimately resulting, on the average, in one death per person. The EPA will tax and regulate that danger in an attempt to reduce that number.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    The globalwarming scam always reminds me of the time a group got people to sign a petition banning the use of di-hydrogen oxide because it has been known to cause environmental damage and is lethal to all living creatures.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    The globalwarming scam always reminds me of the time a group got people to sign a petition banning the use of di-hydrogen oxide because it has been known to cause environmental damage and is lethal to all living creatures.

  • http://wipfandstock.com/store/As_Though_It_Were_Actually_True_A_Christian_Apologetics_Primer Matt C.

    Yes, every person is a polluter, and as such, must be carefully regulated in all activities which involve breathing.

    Maybe somebody will demotivate the issue by suggesting that sex be regulated on the grounds that heavy breathing results in the emission of this dangerous substance. There’s a limit to what Americans will put up with, after all.

  • http://wipfandstock.com/store/As_Though_It_Were_Actually_True_A_Christian_Apologetics_Primer Matt C.

    Yes, every person is a polluter, and as such, must be carefully regulated in all activities which involve breathing.

    Maybe somebody will demotivate the issue by suggesting that sex be regulated on the grounds that heavy breathing results in the emission of this dangerous substance. There’s a limit to what Americans will put up with, after all.

  • Manxman

    Americans will not be a free people until the EPA is eliminated. It has too much power and it is too unaccountable. This latest thing with CO2 should make the dangers of rule by bureaucratic fiat crystal clear.

  • Manxman

    Americans will not be a free people until the EPA is eliminated. It has too much power and it is too unaccountable. This latest thing with CO2 should make the dangers of rule by bureaucratic fiat crystal clear.

  • DonS

    The courts are to blame for this one as well. The executive branch can only regulate based on enabling legislation. The Clean Air Act does not address carbon dioxide as a pollutant, and the Bush Administration refused to regulate it on the basis that it was not authorized to do so, absent the passage of appropriate legislation. Environmental groups took the matter to court, and actually got a decision from a very activist court permitting the EPA to regulate CO2.

    Once the government has health care under its control, perhaps we can get a two for one and really reduce health care costs. The EPA can be in charge, and prohibit approval of health care procedures in order to reduce the emission of harmful pollutants. We can save money and clean up the environment at the same time!

  • DonS

    The courts are to blame for this one as well. The executive branch can only regulate based on enabling legislation. The Clean Air Act does not address carbon dioxide as a pollutant, and the Bush Administration refused to regulate it on the basis that it was not authorized to do so, absent the passage of appropriate legislation. Environmental groups took the matter to court, and actually got a decision from a very activist court permitting the EPA to regulate CO2.

    Once the government has health care under its control, perhaps we can get a two for one and really reduce health care costs. The EPA can be in charge, and prohibit approval of health care procedures in order to reduce the emission of harmful pollutants. We can save money and clean up the environment at the same time!

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I’m thinking about taking out a patent on carbon dioxide/electric hybrid technologies for powering my flowers and trees. Those dirty life forms use this sick stuff!

    The EPA is always awesome!

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I’m thinking about taking out a patent on carbon dioxide/electric hybrid technologies for powering my flowers and trees. Those dirty life forms use this sick stuff!

    The EPA is always awesome!

  • Peter Leavitt

    Another nail in the Obama coffin.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Another nail in the Obama coffin.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Time to impeach and remove the head of the EPA, because carbon dioxide by no means is a poison according to the law that chartered them.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Time to impeach and remove the head of the EPA, because carbon dioxide by no means is a poison according to the law that chartered them.

  • dave

    Veith,

    I know you aren’t interested in discussing what the laws compel EPA to do.

    But that would be an interesting discussion to have.

    Instead, we are talking about the red herring of “exhaling”.

  • dave

    Veith,

    I know you aren’t interested in discussing what the laws compel EPA to do.

    But that would be an interesting discussion to have.

    Instead, we are talking about the red herring of “exhaling”.

  • dave

    Based on the responses here, I doubt anybody here knows anything about the laws congress passed that EPA and the Administration are required to implement.

    Such ignorance is demonstrated in posts saying the EPA will declare life dangerous.

  • dave

    Based on the responses here, I doubt anybody here knows anything about the laws congress passed that EPA and the Administration are required to implement.

    Such ignorance is demonstrated in posts saying the EPA will declare life dangerous.

  • Pete

    “We have met the enemy and he is us.” Pogo

  • Pete

    “We have met the enemy and he is us.” Pogo

  • J

    The Religious Right (evangelicals and Lutherans) should not be allowed to discuss anything scientific. You can’t discuss intelligently what you refuse to understand.

  • J

    The Religious Right (evangelicals and Lutherans) should not be allowed to discuss anything scientific. You can’t discuss intelligently what you refuse to understand.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Krauthammer nails this:

    Look, it’s blackmail. It is a way of saying to Congress: Either you do cap-and-trade or we will do cap, no trade. We will regulate every aspect of American life if the EPA now has in its power — and perhaps it will enact it over time — to intrude on every aspect of American life. Essentially what it can do is to regulate emissions from any institution, any enterprise, any apartment block that emits more than 250 tons of CO2 in a year, which is a very low level.

    J, I see, we ignorant conservative Christians need to follow the “scientists” from East Anglia et al who specialize in fudging global warming data and clueing us in on the coming global catastrophe.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Krauthammer nails this:

    Look, it’s blackmail. It is a way of saying to Congress: Either you do cap-and-trade or we will do cap, no trade. We will regulate every aspect of American life if the EPA now has in its power — and perhaps it will enact it over time — to intrude on every aspect of American life. Essentially what it can do is to regulate emissions from any institution, any enterprise, any apartment block that emits more than 250 tons of CO2 in a year, which is a very low level.

    J, I see, we ignorant conservative Christians need to follow the “scientists” from East Anglia et al who specialize in fudging global warming data and clueing us in on the coming global catastrophe.

  • DonS

    Yes, J @ 13. Enlighten us poor ignorant “Religious Righties” please. Because we don’t understand what happened to the climate cooling crisis of the 1970′s, the warnings that we would run out of oil by the mid-1980′s (hint — the world has far more proven reserves of oil now than it did in the 1970′s), the world overpopulation crisis of the 1970′s and 1980′s, and other crises “du jour” that have been a part and parcel of our political life since the 1970′s, ably abetted by greedy “scientists” seeking government grant largesse and their 15 minutes of fame.

  • DonS

    Yes, J @ 13. Enlighten us poor ignorant “Religious Righties” please. Because we don’t understand what happened to the climate cooling crisis of the 1970′s, the warnings that we would run out of oil by the mid-1980′s (hint — the world has far more proven reserves of oil now than it did in the 1970′s), the world overpopulation crisis of the 1970′s and 1980′s, and other crises “du jour” that have been a part and parcel of our political life since the 1970′s, ably abetted by greedy “scientists” seeking government grant largesse and their 15 minutes of fame.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Ah, good, Don (@15). You’re flogging the 70s cooling crisis thing again. I was afraid I’d have to wait a few days to hear about that again.

    It’s fascinating how easy it is for you to defame a rather large group of scientists — going so far as to even put scare-quotes around the word — merely based on what their research has shown.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Ah, good, Don (@15). You’re flogging the 70s cooling crisis thing again. I was afraid I’d have to wait a few days to hear about that again.

    It’s fascinating how easy it is for you to defame a rather large group of scientists — going so far as to even put scare-quotes around the word — merely based on what their research has shown.

  • dave

    15 comments and the EPA haters have offered not one reference to the Clean Air Act and legal requirements of air quality standards.

    You know, you can claim to be talking about what’s right and wrong on this issue, but if you aren’t talking about the what the laws (some almost 40 years old) say, your opinion about what EPA should do or shouldn’t do is useless –because you dont’ know why it acts or how it’s supposed to act. Why, because those laws establish what EPA is supposed to do and most of you offer not a whit of understanding or even knowledge of any of them.

    For example, does any of you know that economic considerations cannot by law be taken into consideration when drafting an air quality standard?

    I find it disheartening that on a blog with so many people in my denomination, that there is so much disinformation.

  • dave

    15 comments and the EPA haters have offered not one reference to the Clean Air Act and legal requirements of air quality standards.

    You know, you can claim to be talking about what’s right and wrong on this issue, but if you aren’t talking about the what the laws (some almost 40 years old) say, your opinion about what EPA should do or shouldn’t do is useless –because you dont’ know why it acts or how it’s supposed to act. Why, because those laws establish what EPA is supposed to do and most of you offer not a whit of understanding or even knowledge of any of them.

    For example, does any of you know that economic considerations cannot by law be taken into consideration when drafting an air quality standard?

    I find it disheartening that on a blog with so many people in my denomination, that there is so much disinformation.

  • DonS

    tODD, not at all for what their research has shown. Rather, for the overhyped claims they have made based on what their research has shown. And, their unwillingness to admit and disclose the assumptions built into their models, and that science, by its very nature, is NEVER settled.

  • DonS

    tODD, not at all for what their research has shown. Rather, for the overhyped claims they have made based on what their research has shown. And, their unwillingness to admit and disclose the assumptions built into their models, and that science, by its very nature, is NEVER settled.

  • DonS

    dave @ 17: why don’t you enlighten us as to what we are missing, instead of just lamenting our failures to discuss the issue the way you would like it to be discussed? Start by explaining where in the Clean Air Act CO2 is identified as a pollutant to be regulated. A specific section cite would be helpful, as it is a huge act. This would help us to better understand why the EPA is not utterly overstepping its statutory authority in extending its regulatory authority from prior identified particulate pollutants to a gas which is the very essence of life itself and is emitted by every living, breathing mammal.

  • DonS

    dave @ 17: why don’t you enlighten us as to what we are missing, instead of just lamenting our failures to discuss the issue the way you would like it to be discussed? Start by explaining where in the Clean Air Act CO2 is identified as a pollutant to be regulated. A specific section cite would be helpful, as it is a huge act. This would help us to better understand why the EPA is not utterly overstepping its statutory authority in extending its regulatory authority from prior identified particulate pollutants to a gas which is the very essence of life itself and is emitted by every living, breathing mammal.

  • dave

    Ah, DonS is talking about the Clean Air Act, so I will amend my statement above.

    And the Clean Air Act leaves that to EPA to define, through a public and proscriptive process, pollutants covered by air quality standards.

    Does any of you think that when you mislead on these things that people are judging Jesus and what you say about him according to the truth or falseness of what you say about other things?

  • dave

    Ah, DonS is talking about the Clean Air Act, so I will amend my statement above.

    And the Clean Air Act leaves that to EPA to define, through a public and proscriptive process, pollutants covered by air quality standards.

    Does any of you think that when you mislead on these things that people are judging Jesus and what you say about him according to the truth or falseness of what you say about other things?

  • dave

    Don @ 18. Again, if you are going to cite the Clean Air Act, why do you falsely imply that EPA is only supposed to set standards based on final science that can never be changed? Why then is it written into the legislation that standards will be updated or added to?

  • dave

    Don @ 18. Again, if you are going to cite the Clean Air Act, why do you falsely imply that EPA is only supposed to set standards based on final science that can never be changed? Why then is it written into the legislation that standards will be updated or added to?

  • dave

    Don @ 20:

    Gosh, I thought you claimted to know what the Clean Air Act said.

    Anyway, you can easily google Clean Air Act language:

    “(d)(1) Not later than December 31, 1980, and at five-year intervals
    thereafter, the Administrator shall complete a thorough review
    of the criteria published under section 108 and the national ambient
    air quality standards promulgated under this section and shall
    make such revisions in such criteria and standards and promulgate
    such new standards as may be appropriate in accordance with section
    108 and subsection (b) of this section. The Administrator may
    review and revise criteria or promulgate new standards earlier or
    more frequently than required under this paragraph.
    (2)(A) The Administrator shall appoint an independent scientific
    review committee composed of seven members including
    at least one member of the National Academy of Sciences, one
    physician, and one person representing State air pollution control
    agencies.
    (B) Not later than January 1, 1980, and at five-year intervals
    thereafter, the committee referred to in subparagraph (A) shall
    complete a review of the criteria published under section 108 and
    the national primary and secondary ambient air quality standards
    promulgated under this section and shall recommend to the Administrator
    any new national ambient air quality standards and revisions
    of existing criteria and standards as may be appropriate
    under section 108 and subsection (b) of this section.
    (C) Such committee shall also (i) advise the Administrator”

    http://epw.senate.gov/envlaws/cleanair.pdf

    Now maybe everyone here can see the deceitful game you are playing with them by saying that an air quality standard must be noted verbatim in the Clean Air Act for it to be valid when the language leaves EPA to in fact determine those criteria.

  • dave

    Don @ 20:

    Gosh, I thought you claimted to know what the Clean Air Act said.

    Anyway, you can easily google Clean Air Act language:

    “(d)(1) Not later than December 31, 1980, and at five-year intervals
    thereafter, the Administrator shall complete a thorough review
    of the criteria published under section 108 and the national ambient
    air quality standards promulgated under this section and shall
    make such revisions in such criteria and standards and promulgate
    such new standards as may be appropriate in accordance with section
    108 and subsection (b) of this section. The Administrator may
    review and revise criteria or promulgate new standards earlier or
    more frequently than required under this paragraph.
    (2)(A) The Administrator shall appoint an independent scientific
    review committee composed of seven members including
    at least one member of the National Academy of Sciences, one
    physician, and one person representing State air pollution control
    agencies.
    (B) Not later than January 1, 1980, and at five-year intervals
    thereafter, the committee referred to in subparagraph (A) shall
    complete a review of the criteria published under section 108 and
    the national primary and secondary ambient air quality standards
    promulgated under this section and shall recommend to the Administrator
    any new national ambient air quality standards and revisions
    of existing criteria and standards as may be appropriate
    under section 108 and subsection (b) of this section.
    (C) Such committee shall also (i) advise the Administrator”

    http://epw.senate.gov/envlaws/cleanair.pdf

    Now maybe everyone here can see the deceitful game you are playing with them by saying that an air quality standard must be noted verbatim in the Clean Air Act for it to be valid when the language leaves EPA to in fact determine those criteria.

  • DonS

    dave @ 21: It’s one thing to update particulate standards based on new health studies, better available technology, such as scrubbers, etc., or to even regulate new pollutants of the same type (i.e. particulate pollutants which have been found to cause lung damage) as those originally contemplated by the statute. But, it is another thing entirely to utilize that particulate pollution statute to regulate an entirely different type of so-called “pollutant”, one which is essential to life, and which causes no known lung damage or any other harm to the population in known and ordinary concentrations. This is why we have a legislature. It is up to our elected officials to review and understand the science behind these new findings, and to then debate and evaluate whether the potential benefits to be gained by restricting and reducing CO2 emissions outweigh the tremendous costs and hardships in doing so.

  • DonS

    dave @ 21: It’s one thing to update particulate standards based on new health studies, better available technology, such as scrubbers, etc., or to even regulate new pollutants of the same type (i.e. particulate pollutants which have been found to cause lung damage) as those originally contemplated by the statute. But, it is another thing entirely to utilize that particulate pollution statute to regulate an entirely different type of so-called “pollutant”, one which is essential to life, and which causes no known lung damage or any other harm to the population in known and ordinary concentrations. This is why we have a legislature. It is up to our elected officials to review and understand the science behind these new findings, and to then debate and evaluate whether the potential benefits to be gained by restricting and reducing CO2 emissions outweigh the tremendous costs and hardships in doing so.

  • dave

    Don @ 23:

    Except the legislation gives EPA broad authority to determine criteria, both for water and air. It is not written into the legislation that congress would determine pollutants one by one.

  • dave

    Don @ 23:

    Except the legislation gives EPA broad authority to determine criteria, both for water and air. It is not written into the legislation that congress would determine pollutants one by one.

  • DonS

    dave @ 22: Note the language you cite: “shall
    complete a review of the criteria published under section 108 and
    the national primary and secondary ambient air quality standards
    promulgated under this section and shall recommend to the Administrator
    any new national ambient air quality standards and revisions
    of existing criteria and standards AS MAY BE APPROPRIATE UNDER SECTION 108 AND SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION” (emphasis added).

    Some things are just not appropriate, because they are completely outside of the scope of what was contemplated by the legislation. All of the “pollutants” identified in the Clean Air Act are non-naturally occurring compounds which are known to cause damage to humans, animals, and crops when they are exposed in excessive concentrations. CO2 is not such a compound. It is entirely different in kind and purpose, and were it to be eliminated, we would all immediately die. It’s not appropriate for the EPA to expand its mission to regulate CO2 based on the venerable Clean Air Act. It is incumbent on Congress to pass new authorizing legislation if it wishes to empower the EPA to expand its authority in such a massive way.

  • DonS

    dave @ 22: Note the language you cite: “shall
    complete a review of the criteria published under section 108 and
    the national primary and secondary ambient air quality standards
    promulgated under this section and shall recommend to the Administrator
    any new national ambient air quality standards and revisions
    of existing criteria and standards AS MAY BE APPROPRIATE UNDER SECTION 108 AND SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION” (emphasis added).

    Some things are just not appropriate, because they are completely outside of the scope of what was contemplated by the legislation. All of the “pollutants” identified in the Clean Air Act are non-naturally occurring compounds which are known to cause damage to humans, animals, and crops when they are exposed in excessive concentrations. CO2 is not such a compound. It is entirely different in kind and purpose, and were it to be eliminated, we would all immediately die. It’s not appropriate for the EPA to expand its mission to regulate CO2 based on the venerable Clean Air Act. It is incumbent on Congress to pass new authorizing legislation if it wishes to empower the EPA to expand its authority in such a massive way.

  • DonS

    dave @ 24: Certainly, you are not arguing that Congress anticipated that the Clean Air Act would be read so expansively as to regulate CO2? It is not just another pollutant, for the reasons I stated above.

  • DonS

    dave @ 24: Certainly, you are not arguing that Congress anticipated that the Clean Air Act would be read so expansively as to regulate CO2? It is not just another pollutant, for the reasons I stated above.

  • DonS

    dave: Fortunately, authorization of an executive agency to act is a positive requirement. An agency cannot merely state that it is authorized to act in a certain way because Congress did not prohibit it, as you appear to be arguing. Even “broad authority” cannot extend so far as to change the very character of the legislation, else we would truly be an oligarchy, rather than a Republic, accountable directly to the people.

  • DonS

    dave: Fortunately, authorization of an executive agency to act is a positive requirement. An agency cannot merely state that it is authorized to act in a certain way because Congress did not prohibit it, as you appear to be arguing. Even “broad authority” cannot extend so far as to change the very character of the legislation, else we would truly be an oligarchy, rather than a Republic, accountable directly to the people.

  • dave

    Don @ 24:

    Well now you are arguing legislative intent which makes it sound like it’s not the slam-dunk issue you claimed it to be earlier in this thread.

    And in large enough quantities, CO2 will kill Coral Reefs and the critters therein.

  • dave

    Don @ 24:

    Well now you are arguing legislative intent which makes it sound like it’s not the slam-dunk issue you claimed it to be earlier in this thread.

    And in large enough quantities, CO2 will kill Coral Reefs and the critters therein.

  • DonS

    Dave: Legislative intent? How do you figure? You are the one arguing that Congress intended the Clean Air Act to extend to a completely unrelated issue. I am simply arguing that the Clean Air Act does not authorize, on its face, regulation of gases alleged to contribute to AGW.

  • DonS

    Dave: Legislative intent? How do you figure? You are the one arguing that Congress intended the Clean Air Act to extend to a completely unrelated issue. I am simply arguing that the Clean Air Act does not authorize, on its face, regulation of gases alleged to contribute to AGW.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@25), “All of the ‘pollutants’ identified in the Clean Air Act are non-naturally occurring compounds.”

    That is soooo not true. Many of them occur naturally, but of course in amounts that typically are not as harmful as those generated by humans.

    Just one of many examples: Hydrochloric acid. It’s in your stomach right now. It’s necessary for you to live. But to hear most commenting on this thread, it would be craaaaazy to label hydrochloric acid a pollutant! Why, they want their water supply to have even more HCl in it! They put it on their Cheerios!

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@25), “All of the ‘pollutants’ identified in the Clean Air Act are non-naturally occurring compounds.”

    That is soooo not true. Many of them occur naturally, but of course in amounts that typically are not as harmful as those generated by humans.

    Just one of many examples: Hydrochloric acid. It’s in your stomach right now. It’s necessary for you to live. But to hear most commenting on this thread, it would be craaaaazy to label hydrochloric acid a pollutant! Why, they want their water supply to have even more HCl in it! They put it on their Cheerios!

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@18), I have to ask, what is the point of your saying that “science, by its very nature, is NEVER settled”? Do you honestly believe that? Still think it’s a good idea to ingest arsenic? Still think the jury’s out on that one — and always will be?

    Do you have a hard time getting dressed in the morning? “It’s winter, and the forecast says it’ll be chilly today, but the science isn’t settled, and it might get up to 120 degrees today! You NEVER KNOW!” Somehow, I doubt it.

    In short, I don’t believe that you think all science is “NEVER settled”.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@18), I have to ask, what is the point of your saying that “science, by its very nature, is NEVER settled”? Do you honestly believe that? Still think it’s a good idea to ingest arsenic? Still think the jury’s out on that one — and always will be?

    Do you have a hard time getting dressed in the morning? “It’s winter, and the forecast says it’ll be chilly today, but the science isn’t settled, and it might get up to 120 degrees today! You NEVER KNOW!” Somehow, I doubt it.

    In short, I don’t believe that you think all science is “NEVER settled”.

  • DonS

    OK, we’re really getting off track here. Hydrochloric acid? Arsenic? Of course, neither of these compounds are regulated under the Clean Air Act because they are not an air pollutant. Here’s the EPA’s “plain English” guide to the Clean Air Act: http://www.epa.gov/air/caa/peg/cleanup.html

    As you can see, six common air pollutants are regulated under the Act. Now, of course, when I earlier said these pollutants were not naturally occurring, I didn’t mean ever. I meant, in our air. In contrast to CO2, the ideal level in our air of the six regulated pollutants is zero. However, the EPA, under authority of the Clean Air Act, developed acceptable maximum safe levels of these pollutants in air, taking into account the damage the pollutants cause to human health, crops, and the like versus the cost of feasibility of pollutant level reductions. Obviously, regulating so-called greenhouse gases such as CO2, which ARE naturally occurring in our air, and do not cause direct harm to human health, crops and the like in any feasible occurring levels, is a different ballgame entirely, and way outside the scope of EPA authority. Something like this, which involves such wrenching and painful changes on society, should be initiated and authorized by our elected representatives, after due deliberation.

    Or, so one would think in a reasonable world.

  • DonS

    OK, we’re really getting off track here. Hydrochloric acid? Arsenic? Of course, neither of these compounds are regulated under the Clean Air Act because they are not an air pollutant. Here’s the EPA’s “plain English” guide to the Clean Air Act: http://www.epa.gov/air/caa/peg/cleanup.html

    As you can see, six common air pollutants are regulated under the Act. Now, of course, when I earlier said these pollutants were not naturally occurring, I didn’t mean ever. I meant, in our air. In contrast to CO2, the ideal level in our air of the six regulated pollutants is zero. However, the EPA, under authority of the Clean Air Act, developed acceptable maximum safe levels of these pollutants in air, taking into account the damage the pollutants cause to human health, crops, and the like versus the cost of feasibility of pollutant level reductions. Obviously, regulating so-called greenhouse gases such as CO2, which ARE naturally occurring in our air, and do not cause direct harm to human health, crops and the like in any feasible occurring levels, is a different ballgame entirely, and way outside the scope of EPA authority. Something like this, which involves such wrenching and painful changes on society, should be initiated and authorized by our elected representatives, after due deliberation.

    Or, so one would think in a reasonable world.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 31: Obviously, in context, I was referring to that science which is based on modeling and extrapolated data, such as climate change theory and evolutionary theory. That is the point of discussion on this thread. However, for the record, I do agree with you that if you read a thermometer and it says 56 degrees, that is indeed the temperature, within the margin of error of the thermometer.

    I hope that makes you feel better.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 31: Obviously, in context, I was referring to that science which is based on modeling and extrapolated data, such as climate change theory and evolutionary theory. That is the point of discussion on this thread. However, for the record, I do agree with you that if you read a thermometer and it says 56 degrees, that is indeed the temperature, within the margin of error of the thermometer.

    I hope that makes you feel better.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@32), you’re not helping me believe that you know much at all about the Clean Air Act. I realize we’re both non-scientists Googling to discover the truth here, but on this topic, your Google-fu appears to be failing you.

    You said, “Hydrochloric acid? Arsenic? Of course, neither of these compounds are regulated under the Clean Air Act because they are not an air pollutant.” To which I reply, please read this document on the EPA Web site, titled The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 List of Hazardous Air Pollutants. On it, you’ll notice that hydrochloric acid is listed, with CAS Number 7647010. Am I missing something?

    You seem to think that the Plain English Guide that you found lists the six pollutants that the Act is restricted to regulating. Frankly, I don’t see that. Perusing the rest of the Plain English Guide makes clear that other chemicals besides those six are regulated. Those six are, as the page you linked to notes, merely “six common air pollutants … found all over the United States.”

    You also said, “when I earlier said these pollutants were not naturally occurring, I didn’t mean ever. I meant, in our air.” Well, what about carbon disulfide, which is released by volcanoes and marshes?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@32), you’re not helping me believe that you know much at all about the Clean Air Act. I realize we’re both non-scientists Googling to discover the truth here, but on this topic, your Google-fu appears to be failing you.

    You said, “Hydrochloric acid? Arsenic? Of course, neither of these compounds are regulated under the Clean Air Act because they are not an air pollutant.” To which I reply, please read this document on the EPA Web site, titled The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 List of Hazardous Air Pollutants. On it, you’ll notice that hydrochloric acid is listed, with CAS Number 7647010. Am I missing something?

    You seem to think that the Plain English Guide that you found lists the six pollutants that the Act is restricted to regulating. Frankly, I don’t see that. Perusing the rest of the Plain English Guide makes clear that other chemicals besides those six are regulated. Those six are, as the page you linked to notes, merely “six common air pollutants … found all over the United States.”

    You also said, “when I earlier said these pollutants were not naturally occurring, I didn’t mean ever. I meant, in our air.” Well, what about carbon disulfide, which is released by volcanoes and marshes?

  • DonS

    tODD @ 35: Wow, tODD. I hope that you didn’t stay up all night madly googling for that obscure reference. But, you definitely win the Google wars. I concede.

    By the way, I am a scientist. I have degrees in Physics and Mechanical Engineering. My subsequent law degree does not totally negate that prior scientific instruction, which I still use in my profession as a patent attorney.

    However, I don’t believe the point I made in post 32 is changed in any way by this new tidbit of information.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 35: Wow, tODD. I hope that you didn’t stay up all night madly googling for that obscure reference. But, you definitely win the Google wars. I concede.

    By the way, I am a scientist. I have degrees in Physics and Mechanical Engineering. My subsequent law degree does not totally negate that prior scientific instruction, which I still use in my profession as a patent attorney.

    However, I don’t believe the point I made in post 32 is changed in any way by this new tidbit of information.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@35), “Wow, tODD. I hope that you didn’t stay up all night madly googling for that obscure reference.” What an odd way to admit that you were wrong. And no, it was the first result I found when I Googled for [clean air act pollutant]. I guess if you’re going to admit I’m right, you at least get to intimate I’m wasting my time in doing actual (if incredibly basic) research, hmm?

    You have a curious notion of what a scientist is, by the way. Does my Electrical Engineering degree (with many science courses included) make me a scientist, too? Does this mean all psych majors are psychologists, as well?

    And there remain several things wrong with your statement @32 (there are more than six pollutants regulated by the Act; some of them do occur naturally in the air; as such, it is not true that the ideal level for them is zero; and as Dave noted, carbon dioxide can have a harmful effect on coral reefs and the systems that depend on them — all at feasible levels). What part of it do you still think is meaningfully valid?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@35), “Wow, tODD. I hope that you didn’t stay up all night madly googling for that obscure reference.” What an odd way to admit that you were wrong. And no, it was the first result I found when I Googled for [clean air act pollutant]. I guess if you’re going to admit I’m right, you at least get to intimate I’m wasting my time in doing actual (if incredibly basic) research, hmm?

    You have a curious notion of what a scientist is, by the way. Does my Electrical Engineering degree (with many science courses included) make me a scientist, too? Does this mean all psych majors are psychologists, as well?

    And there remain several things wrong with your statement @32 (there are more than six pollutants regulated by the Act; some of them do occur naturally in the air; as such, it is not true that the ideal level for them is zero; and as Dave noted, carbon dioxide can have a harmful effect on coral reefs and the systems that depend on them — all at feasible levels). What part of it do you still think is meaningfully valid?

  • DonS

    I conceded the point, tODD. What more do you want? The fact is that it was an incredibly silly point, and my real mistake was in letting you divert me into a discussion about hydrochloric acid in the first place. Because, as you know, my point was really related to compounds that naturally occur in air, in measurable quantities. Not in the digestive system.

    If you have studied science, and have a degree in a science discipline, you are a scientist. I’m not sure why that is a curious notion to you. I may not be a meteorologist, but I understand the scientific method, and I also understand that when scientists are over-hyping computer models and predictions as “settled science”, they are not engaging in proper analysis under the scientific method. I also know that the track record of such predictions is horrendous, particularly when they are mixed into a toxic stew with partisan politics.

  • DonS

    I conceded the point, tODD. What more do you want? The fact is that it was an incredibly silly point, and my real mistake was in letting you divert me into a discussion about hydrochloric acid in the first place. Because, as you know, my point was really related to compounds that naturally occur in air, in measurable quantities. Not in the digestive system.

    If you have studied science, and have a degree in a science discipline, you are a scientist. I’m not sure why that is a curious notion to you. I may not be a meteorologist, but I understand the scientific method, and I also understand that when scientists are over-hyping computer models and predictions as “settled science”, they are not engaging in proper analysis under the scientific method. I also know that the track record of such predictions is horrendous, particularly when they are mixed into a toxic stew with partisan politics.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@37), you said that I “diverted” you into “an incredibly silly point”, and that your “point was really related to compounds that naturally occur in air”. Except you haven’t responded to the example I cited (@34). Or let’s consider how your point is also proven wrong by sulfur dioxide, which is also produced naturally by volcanoes — yes, even in measurable quantities — and is regulated by Title IV of the Clean Air Act.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@37), you said that I “diverted” you into “an incredibly silly point”, and that your “point was really related to compounds that naturally occur in air”. Except you haven’t responded to the example I cited (@34). Or let’s consider how your point is also proven wrong by sulfur dioxide, which is also produced naturally by volcanoes — yes, even in measurable quantities — and is regulated by Title IV of the Clean Air Act.

  • DonS

    141 climate scientists have sent an open letter yesterday to the UN Secretary General explaining why so-called climate change science is NOT settled, and reminding him that the burden is on those proclaiming catastrophe to convincingly prove their case: http://www.copenhagenclimatechallenge.org/

  • DonS

    141 climate scientists have sent an open letter yesterday to the UN Secretary General explaining why so-called climate change science is NOT settled, and reminding him that the burden is on those proclaiming catastrophe to convincingly prove their case: http://www.copenhagenclimatechallenge.org/

  • DonS

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2009-12/10/content_9151129.htm

    This is where we are ultimately headed with climate control regulation. Population control. It is the only way to get to a meaningful carbon emission reduction. Scary stuff.

  • DonS

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2009-12/10/content_9151129.htm

    This is where we are ultimately headed with climate control regulation. Population control. It is the only way to get to a meaningful carbon emission reduction. Scary stuff.

  • DonS

    http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=2314438

    More population control advocacy from a Canadian columnist. She is actually advocating that the entire world adopt China’s one child policy! Although this sounds absurd, it is likely that a majority of those who attended the Copenhagen summit this week agree with this notion, and would adopt it as policy if they thought they could get away with it.

  • DonS

    http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=2314438

    More population control advocacy from a Canadian columnist. She is actually advocating that the entire world adopt China’s one child policy! Although this sounds absurd, it is likely that a majority of those who attended the Copenhagen summit this week agree with this notion, and would adopt it as policy if they thought they could get away with it.

  • John C

    http://www.climateprogress.org/2009/12/10/climategate/

    You want scientists Don, I’ve got scientists. 1700 British scientists come forward to support the science of global warming.
    Meanwhile, in yesterday’s Sydney Morning Herald the Bureau of Meteorology states that the last 6 months were Australia’s warmist spring/winter period on record.

  • John C

    http://www.climateprogress.org/2009/12/10/climategate/

    You want scientists Don, I’ve got scientists. 1700 British scientists come forward to support the science of global warming.
    Meanwhile, in yesterday’s Sydney Morning Herald the Bureau of Meteorology states that the last 6 months were Australia’s warmist spring/winter period on record.

  • DonS

    John C, here’s an article explaining the background behind that statement: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article6951029.ece

    Key quotes: “The Met Office has embarked on an urgent exercise to bolster the reputation of climate-change science after the furore over stolen e-mails.
    More than 1,700 scientists have agreed to sign a statement defending the ‘professional integrity’ of global warming research. They were responding to a round-robin request from the Met Office, which has spent four days collecting signatures. The initiative is a sign of how worried it is that e-mails stolen from the University of East Anglia are fuelling scepticism about man-made global warming at a critical moment in talks on carbon emissions.”

    “One scientist said that he felt under pressure to sign the circular or risk losing work. The Met Office admitted that many of the signatories did not work on climate change.”

    “One scientist told The Times he felt under pressure to sign. ‘The Met Office is a major employer of scientists and has long had a policy of only appointing and working with those who subscribe to their views on man-made global warming,’ he said.

    Professor Slingo denied that the Met Office had put anyone under pressure. “The response has been absolutely spontaneous. As a scientist you sign things you agree with, not because you are worried about what the Met Office might think of you,” she said.”

  • DonS

    John C, here’s an article explaining the background behind that statement: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article6951029.ece

    Key quotes: “The Met Office has embarked on an urgent exercise to bolster the reputation of climate-change science after the furore over stolen e-mails.
    More than 1,700 scientists have agreed to sign a statement defending the ‘professional integrity’ of global warming research. They were responding to a round-robin request from the Met Office, which has spent four days collecting signatures. The initiative is a sign of how worried it is that e-mails stolen from the University of East Anglia are fuelling scepticism about man-made global warming at a critical moment in talks on carbon emissions.”

    “One scientist said that he felt under pressure to sign the circular or risk losing work. The Met Office admitted that many of the signatories did not work on climate change.”

    “One scientist told The Times he felt under pressure to sign. ‘The Met Office is a major employer of scientists and has long had a policy of only appointing and working with those who subscribe to their views on man-made global warming,’ he said.

    Professor Slingo denied that the Met Office had put anyone under pressure. “The response has been absolutely spontaneous. As a scientist you sign things you agree with, not because you are worried about what the Met Office might think of you,” she said.”

  • DonS

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/climate_money.pdf

    This is a very interesting report explaining the extreme spike in funding for climate research, all of which is directed to proving the existence of AGW. As the report states: “There doesn’t necessarily need to be a conspiracy. It doesn’t require any centrally coordinated deceit or covert instructions to operate. Instead it’s the lack of funding for the alternatives that leaves a vacuum and creates a systemic failure. The force of monopolistic funding works like a ratchet mechanism on science. Results can move in both directions, but the funding means that only results from one side of the equation get ‘traction.’”

    There is an inescapable logic in that statement.

  • DonS

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/climate_money.pdf

    This is a very interesting report explaining the extreme spike in funding for climate research, all of which is directed to proving the existence of AGW. As the report states: “There doesn’t necessarily need to be a conspiracy. It doesn’t require any centrally coordinated deceit or covert instructions to operate. Instead it’s the lack of funding for the alternatives that leaves a vacuum and creates a systemic failure. The force of monopolistic funding works like a ratchet mechanism on science. Results can move in both directions, but the funding means that only results from one side of the equation get ‘traction.’”

    There is an inescapable logic in that statement.

  • DonS

    “If we ask 100 people to look for lizards in the jungle, would anyone be surprised if no one sees the elephant on the plain? Few people are paid or rewarded for auditing the IPCC and associated organizations. Where is the Department of Solar Influence or the Institute of Natural Climate Change?”

    Another statement from the same report.

    Read the whole thing. It’s well worth your time, even if you are a AGW supporter. At least expose yourself to the other side.

  • DonS

    “If we ask 100 people to look for lizards in the jungle, would anyone be surprised if no one sees the elephant on the plain? Few people are paid or rewarded for auditing the IPCC and associated organizations. Where is the Department of Solar Influence or the Institute of Natural Climate Change?”

    Another statement from the same report.

    Read the whole thing. It’s well worth your time, even if you are a AGW supporter. At least expose yourself to the other side.


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