Thursday, July 24, 2008

EPA Email Contained Greenhouse Gas Warning

Remember the email from the EPA that the White House refused to open? In it, the EPA administrator reported that greenhouse gases caused significant global warming, and he advised the administration to set limits on carbon dioxide emissions in accordance with a Supreme Court ruling.

The 38-page document says EPA Administator Stephen Johnson believes there is "compelling and robust" evidence that the increasing average global temperature that has been observed in recent years is due to manmade greenhouse gas emissions.

Greenhouse gases accumulate in the atmosphere and remain there for many decades. There is strong agreement among U.S. government scientists, academics and researchers worldwide that the gases are producing warming and that the Earth could warm enough to cause unstoppable changes — such as oceans engulfing coastal regions where millions live — if emissions are left unchecked.

The EPA's document said the EPA chief "is proposing to find that elevated levels of GHG (greenhouse gas) concentrations may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public welfare."
As I wrote in my first post about the email, the shamelessness of the current administration never ceases to astonish me. Here are their own political appointees, who were likely picked as safe choices who would not rock the boat, telling them that urgent action is needed. And yet the officials at the top still find ways to deny the mounting evidence and delay action.

Update: Kate Sheppard at Gristmill has more on the contents of the email and why its findings have not been released to the public.