BREAKING: SCOTUS puts the brakes on some EPA global warming rules

Justices limit existing EPA global warming rules

MARK SHERMAN, Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court today placed limits on the sole Obama administration program already in place to deal with power plant and factory emissions of gases blamed for global warming.

The justices said that the Environmental Protection Agency lacks authority in some cases to force companies to evaluate ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. This rule applies when a company needs a permit to expand facilities or build new ones that would increase overall pollution. Carbon dioxide is the chief gas linked to global warming.

The decision does not affect EPA proposals for first-time national standards for new and existing power plants. The most recent proposal aims at a 30 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, but won’t take effect for at least another two years.

The outcome also preserves EPA’s authority over facilities that already emit pollutants that the agency regulates other than greenhouse gases. EPA called the decision “a win for our efforts to reduce carbon pollution because it allows EPA, states and other permitting authorities to continue to require carbon pollution limits in permits for the largest pollution sources.”

Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said “EPA is getting almost everything it wanted in this case.” Scalia said the agency wanted to regulate 86 percent of all greenhouse gases emitted from plants nationwide. The agency will be able to regulate 83 percent of the emissions under the ruling, Scalia said. The court voted 7-2 in this portion of the decision, with Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas saying they would bar all regulation of greenhouse gases under the permitting program.

Full story: http://www.chicoer.com/breakingnews/ci_26016656/justices-limit-existing-epa-global-warming-rules

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78 Responses to BREAKING: SCOTUS puts the brakes on some EPA global warming rules

  1. Kenw says:

    Not so much “putting the brakes on” as a speed bump. From 86% to 83% is not exactly a resounding victory.

    REPLY: it is a start – A

  2. Whoopty-doo — A whole 3% reduction from those previously proposed.

    “Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said “EPA is getting almost everything it wanted in this case.” Scalia said the agency wanted to regulate 86 percent of all greenhouse gases emitted from plants nationwide. The agency will be able to regulate 83 percent of the emissions under the ruling, Scalia said.”

  3. Kenw says:

    Anthiony: Unfortunately instead of a start, it’s more like a Supreme Validation of 95% of the regs. You and I both know that once these are in, they are almost impossible to overturn.

    REPLY: Well the new Obama EPA stuff hasn’t even reached the court yet, we’ll see. Don’t be such a pessimist. Otherwise just give up. -A

  4. Kenw says:

    ^^speeling……

  5. jerry says:

    we are not willing to stand on the dock and wave goodbye as EPA embarks on this multiyear voyage of discovery. (pg. 23 paragraph 3, decision) Scalia

  6. Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said “EPA is getting almost everything it wanted in this case”.
    ————
    Almost aint good enough – obama’s rule must be ABSOLUTE!

  7. albertalad says:

    As a Canadian, our Prime Minister does not have imperial power of this magnitude. Parliament is the only body that can make such rulings. Can anyone tell me how does a US president acquire such absolute power like in the days of monarchs Americans supposedly overthrew to become a republic? This is hard for me to understand.

  8. Dave Yaussy says:

    On June 23, 2014 the US Supreme Court issued an important decision regarding the regulation of greenhouse gases (GHGs). The Supreme Court decided that:

    1. EPA improperly concluded that it was mandated to require Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and Title V permits for sources based on their GHG emissions. Sources that are only major sources by virtue of GHG emissions cannot be drawn into the PSD or Title V programs. The Court also rejected the Tailoring Rule, in which EPA tried to ameliorate the effect of its GHG regulation, and to reduce the number of sources for which permits are required, by unilaterally increasing the major source limits in the Clean Air Act.

    2. Most large sources of GHGs are already regulated under PSD because of emissions of other pollutants, and these sources, referred to by the Court as “anyway” sources, must comply with Best Available Control Technology (BACT) for GHG emissions. However, the Court went out of its way to note existing limitations on BACT application, and pointedly did not rule out allowing EPA to continue to use a 75,000 ton de minimis exception for GHG BACT if EPA could justify that level.

    Maybe the biggest point the Supreme Court made was rejecting the Tailoring Rule, a blatant attempt by the EPA to sidestep an inconvenient portion of the Clean Air Act. It didn’t affect the final decision, but it told EPA that it can’t do whatever it pleases. It doesn’t change everything overnight, but as Anthony said, it’s a start

    Here is the decision: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/13pdf/12-1146_4g18.pdf

  9. Quinn the Eskimo says:

    It doesn’t really slow down the GHG regulation juggernaut. That will continue as long as the Endangerment Finding is on the books. So from that standpoint, it doesn’t do that much good.

    However, the reversal of the Tailoring Rule is a very important vindication of limited government and separation of powers. If it had been affirmed there would essentially be no limit to any regulatory ambition a federal agency might have. They would be completely untethered by any statutory limitations – if they didn’t like the statutory limits on their authority they would be able to ignore them or rewrite them. Thankfully, the Supreme Court rebuked them on this, but it was only a 5-4 decision, which is a strong testament to how screwed up our legal culture is. Four votes on the Supreme Court to uphold EPA’s lawlessness is a threat to the Republic.

    You may not be interested in politics, but politics is interested in you.

  10. william says:

    the solution is simple but politicians lack any guts to implement. Just make EPA congressional funding contingent on the EPA no longer having legislatice authority to regulate CO2.

  11. pokerguy says:

    “REPLY: Well the new Obama EPA stuff hasn’t even reached the court yet, we’ll see. Don’t be such a pessimist. Otherwise just give up. -A”

    Anthony, Couldn’t agree more. Way too many defeatist cry babies around here.

  12. Oldseadog says:

    “….regulate 86% of all greenhouse gasses emitted from plants nationwide …..”.
    When I read that I had this bizarre vision of the Mann standing beside a tree instructing it that he had the authority to stop it producing CO2.
    Josh?

  13. philjourdan says:

    Don’t be such a pessimist.

    I am optimistic that the EPA will circumvent the court rulings for at least 2 more years. ;-)

  14. Box of Rocks says:

    From the Wall Street Journal.

    “In 2009 the agency issued a finding that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are responsible for a warming planet and pose a danger to public health. That conclusion provided the foundation for the EPA’s vehicle emissions standards that have been upheld in court and are now in effect.”

    Like Quinn the Eskimo said it is about the endangerment ruling.

    Time to get the endangerment ruling reversed.

  15. James Ard says:

    I think Anthony is right, three and a half percent of the apple is better than no apple at all. Anyway, the Justices aren’t who is going to save us from the scam, mother nature is the one who’s going to put a stop to it. And the harder the progressive jurists push it, the worse they will look when it shakes out.

  16. Chris Magnuson says:

    Even at stringent 5% = significance
    it’s complete defeat.
    97% loss is complete.

    In a horse race its a complete defeat.
    In a business venture it’s a complete defeat.
    In a military adventure it’s a complete defeat.
    In a political seats contest it’s a complete defeat.
    I’m a scientist not a wannabe one so reality actually matters in my business.

    Anybody who can’t face that and discuss it like an adult probably believed it was all real, in the first place. The gullible clowns who believed in it, are the ones responsible for us all watching the integrity of science be flushed along with their reputations.

  17. Matthew R Marler says:

    Robin: I think this Jonathan Adler story is a more helpful discussion of the ruling. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2014/06/23/scotus-rejects-epas-rewrite-of-the-clean-air-act-but-ghg-regulation-will-go-forward/

    Agreed, and thank you for the link.

  18. Matthew R Marler says:

    Dave Yaussey: Maybe the biggest point the Supreme Court made was rejecting the Tailoring Rule, a blatant attempt by the EPA to sidestep an inconvenient portion of the Clean Air Act. It didn’t affect the final decision, but it told EPA that it can’t do whatever it pleases. It doesn’t change everything overnight, but as Anthony said, it’s a start

    This looks important for future cases.

  19. Dave Yaussy says:

    Box of Rocks says:
    June 23, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Like Quinn the Eskimo said it is about the endangerment ruling.
    Time to get the endangerment ruling reversed.

    That is exactly right, and it was the subject of a law review article I just did for the West Virginia University Law School Law Review: “Unringing the Bell: Time for EPA to Reconsider Its Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding”

    But as a practical matter, this will have to wait for a new administration

  20. JJ says:

    “Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said “EPA is getting almost everything it wanted in this case.”

    To be quantitative about it, EPA is getting 83/86ths of what it wanted in this case.

    83/86 = 97% … Coincidence or conspiracy?

    :)

  21. Resourceguy says:

    Lesson learned by EPA: aim ridiculously high with rewrites of Congressional mandate and settle for ridiculous.

  22. bw says:

    The entire issue has morphed into institutional insanity.
    Carbon dioxide is not pollution.

  23. Michale C. Roberts says:

    We need to recall where it all started – http://www.worldviewofglobalwarming.org/pdf/GHGEndangermentProposal.pdf

    Please use your word search function and review PDF this for references to source documents – try “IPCC” – and you will be enlightened. This is where any effort toward discrediting or to eventually have the finding reverse must start – with the course documents supporting the finding.

    Then look at the requirements for such findings (or at least senator Inhofe’s view on this issue)http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=d09e09b0-802a-23ad-4108-e0a7c183b09f:

    This is the way to go to chip away at the edifice of EPA GHG rules – expose the shoddy conclusions based upon science that does not live up to the scientific method…….

  24. @william at 12:33 pm
    the solution is simple but politicians lack any guts to implement. Just make EPA congressional funding contingent on the EPA no longer having legislatice authority to regulate CO2.

    I agree 100%. The Republican House could have stopped the EPA “Carbon Pollution under CAA” strategy in its tracks by putting a rider in the EPA’s budget that it had to bring Carbon Pollution Regulations as an amendment to the CAA that Congress must pass as law. The Administration could not have sustained a government shutdown standing against such a constitutional demand.

    Instead the Republican House leadership surrendered all control over the budget and debt ceiling until March 2015. A complete abdication of duty. For that reason alone, Eric Cantor deserved to lose. I’m glad to see such strategic ineptitude given the heave-ho.

  25. Kenw says:

    Anthony: I would love to be more optimistic, however 60 years’ experience has been a tough taskmaster. Perhaps I can squeeze some optimism in, perhaps about 3%….

  26. Joseph Murphy says:

    It is not the courts job to save us from terrible politicians and bureaucrats. That is our job. If the population is ignorant and naive you can expect worse from the Government.

  27. M Simon says:

    Can I be a pessimist and still not give up?

  28. Chris Magnuson says:

    The thing to do is have people keep writing books explaining just how the scam has been generated, and who was involved in spreading the science as truth, and remembering just who did what, explaining it to their children so there’s a clear difference between what they are taught by the political and money prostitutes,

    and whatever real science they manage to learn in the wake of the current ghetto of scientific literacy foisted on at least a generation or two of young adults, worldwide.

    Everyobody needs to just remember who was spreading it, and tell in detail, every single person they know:

    who in the main stream media was peddling it a real,

    who in the blogosphere was peddling it as real,

    who in main stream science said it was real,

    and who said it wasn’t.

    The main thing is don;t let the current state of believer-dominated blogging and media guide what you’ll read and write about, and talk about with your friends.

    Now the true deceivers of this are known it’s important to remember they are nearly all very media savvy and almost all of the scientists involved, are closely aligned with establishing themselves some kind of horn tooters and publicity stunt crackpots in media.

    Boycott the people who spread it,
    Tell them you’re going to boycott them and why,

    and tell every body you see: who and why you will not associate yourself with, because of their teaching that the voodoo was real science.

    People have to realize the public got manipulated by the believers in this, the media hacks who tooted it far and wide, the government spamming endless noise disguised as science, to perpetuate the illusion it is warming.

    Snuffing peoples’ opinions with the most revolting character assassinations and attempts at it,

    Everyone has to recognize just because someone puts on a white lab coat doesn’t mean he’s a scientist. Just because someone puts on the good ol’ boy hayseed act, doesn’t mean they’re not a cynical, cunning political activist, like Gore with his “I’m a preacher” and Obama with his “I don’t have much patience with climate deniers”,

    the public is being hit from both sides by scammers and we all need to dig in and make sure before we breathe our last, we have made sure everyone we know, knows what happened to scientific rigor in the United States and the Western world,

    and we need to make sure none of those who believed in it are able to leave some kind of name involving respectability for themselves, so as soon as they stop spamming, those associated with spreading truth,

    bury them in an avalanche of citizen activists who engage the assassins of science at every meeting; every engagement where we see assumptions of it being real, blog readers and citizens, working citizen scientists, let these liars get out of hand once.

    They’re our generation and it’s our responsibility to make sure we buy their books and go through them marking all the fake claims, then donate them to thrift stores and friends.

    Do not let the wack tards who hijacked science, hijack it for your kids. They’ll telll you to shut up to your face. Don’t let them do it, remind the people taking up for this that you can go all over the internet, your facebook, your twitter, and you can tweet and post up every evil lie they put up on the internet,

    an history can make it’s own recording of these hijackers of scientific discussion and their voodoo.

  29. Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7 says:

    Stephen Rasey says:
    June 23, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    The Republican House could have stopped the EPA “Carbon Pollution under CAA” strategy in its tracks by putting a rider in the EPA’s budget that it had to bring Carbon Pollution Regulations as an amendment to the CAA that Congress must pass as law. The Administration could not have sustained a government shutdown standing against such a constitutional demand.

    I wish I could share your opinion, but I was absolutely stunned at what the administration was able to do on the last “shutdown”:

    1) No money was saved. After all federal employee “missed” salary payments were made up plus overtime, the “shutdown” cost more than just continuing to run things as usual. As a result, there was zero pressure put on the administration and they managed the “shutdown” deliberately to maximize the pain felt by ordinary people so they could blame Republicans.
    2) The nation was outraged in 1932 when the Hoover administration used federal troops to clear the Bonus Army out of Washington who wanted an early payment of their promised bonus. 80-some years later there was little outrage with the Obama administration’s US Park Service threatened WWII veterans with arrest for merely wanting to visit “their” memorial while they were still able to do so.

    Constitutionally the US House controls federal spending, but practically speaking they do not any more. The administration has learned they can get whatever they want in a spending bill just by threatening a shutdown.

  30. Russ R. says:

    The “endangerment finding” is bad law. We don’t know if GHG’s actually increase the temp, in any measurable way. IF it were shown, that they do increase the global temp, we don’t know if it is an “endangerment”, a “mixture of endangerment and benefits”, or wholly “beneficial”. There is no identifiable person, who is “endangered”, by the release of GHG’s.
    Therefore, nobody has standing, to restrict the activity of another person’s release of GHG’s. This is a “theoretical endangerment” that could be used, to restrict any and all activities, that could theoretically endanger some one.

  31. Bill says:

    On the subject of laws and government, I just got the following in my email, from Google Calendar. I never got anything from Google Calendar before. Looks like the warmists are trying to step up their game. So here’s a chance to call in and let our elected representatives know that millions of Americans don’t accept the global warming hype and scare tactics being promoted by those with vested interests, that there is insufficient evidence to warrant spending billions of dollars on something that is not a problem in the first place, and that our representatives are supposed to be responsible TO THE PEOPLE.

    ******
    Congressional call-in
    If you are concerned about global warming, please take a minute to call your US Representative and Senators on 6/23/14. Let them know it’s time to deal with climate change!

    Call the US Capitol switchboard, 202-224-3121, and ask for the office of your Rep and Senators.

    Unsure who represents you in Washington? No worries! Go here:

    http://www.opencongress.org/people/zipcodelookup

    If you want to include in your call a specific solution, carbon fee and dividend is a great one! It will:

    * Reduce CO2 emissions by 33 percent after 10 years, 52 percent after 20 years.

    * In the first 10 years, 2.2 million jobs would be added.

    * The refunded carbon tax would add between $80 billion and $90 billion to annual gross domestic product (GDP).

    * Because of reduced air pollution, by 2025, 13,000 lives would be saved annually.

    Learn more at citizensclimatelobby.org. THANK YOU for making your calls 6/23/14! Together we can save our climate for this and future generations!

    WHY CLIMATE CHANGE?
    Climate change is already costing us all money – by some estimates over $1 trillion/year – with the long-term potential to cost much more. How? By disrupting weather patterns, challenging ecosystems, increasing food prices, acidifying oceans, adding healthcare costs, raising sea levels, stressing our infrastructure, etc. – and with the path we’re on, it’ll only get worse.

    WHY JUNE 23?
    I and 700 fellow citizen volunteers from all over the US are planning to meet with the Washington DC offices of all 535 Congressional offices that week to advocate for free-market solutions to global warming, and it would make a huge impact if they hear from their constituents before we go to The Hill!

    Political disengagement is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Change in Washington begins with you! Thanks!

    PASS IT ON!

    When: Mon Jun 23, 2014
    Where: Phone call (map)

  32. Col Mosby says:

    It should be obvious by now that practically every agency within the Executive branch
    should be removed from their control and made independent. Virtually every agency has been corrupted by this administration. The writers of the Constitution had no idea just how unbalanced the system would become, when laws created new Executive agencies and then allowed them to be controlled by Executive orders and by installing their own puppets to run them. The belief that these agencies would be apolitical has been destroyed, I would say.

  33. profitup10 says:

    I know I am the broken record but the only way out of this unconstitutional Federal gov box is to take away the money and then the powers usurped. Close the EPA, IRS and most of the agencies.
    20 words that will change the way we live
    http://articlevprojecttorestoreliberty.com/the-28th-amendment.html

  34. Chris Magnuson says:

    * By, ‘buy their books,’ I obviously mean where they can be found cheap, not at full price LoL !

  35. David S says:

    The very first sentence in the very first article of the Constitution says: “All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” Neither the EPA nor any of the alphabet soup of federal agencies are mentioned. And nowhere does the Constitution authorize congress to delegate those legislative powers. Yet the EPA passes rules/regulations that carry the force of law. Failure to comply will result in legal action and possibly severe penalties. That sounds a lot like a law. In other words it is flagrantly unconstitutional. So we now have a government where laws are not written by our elected representative in congress but by unelected federal bureaucrats. That’s not the Republican form of government the founders created. It’s more like an oligarchy. We the people are no longer represented. The best way to fix this is to elect only people who will steadfastly support the Constitution. A congress of such people would vote to defund the EPA and enact new laws that throttle all federal agencies and prevent them from overstepping their bounds.

  36. Resourceguy says:

    @M Simon

    You may, but it would help if you not notice a lot of other things in combination.

  37. Joseph Murphy says:
    June 23, 2014 at 2:06 pm
    “It is not the courts job to save us from terrible politicians and bureaucrats. That is our job.”

    ========

    Yes, if this were fifty years ago and we were in a democracy. How is that possible now when half the people are dependent on government for a job or a handout. We have no “job” in the current system except to consume products and services and supply trigger fingers for the only super power. When the dollar is no longer the world’s reserve currency and all the economic chickens have come home to roost, then the experiment will be officially over. Republics can be toppled with gradualism; just takes time.

  38. Saren says:

    “albertalad on June 23, 2014 at 11:57 am

    As a Canadian, our Prime Minister does not have imperial power of this magnitude.”

    The fact the congress and senate can veto the president’s bills would seem to indicate the US limits executive power more than Canada. Also we still have a queen so let’s not throw stones from our glass house.

  39. Dan Pangburn says:

    Carbon dioxide is an odorless, tasteless, transparent gas that is absolutely mandatory for all life on earth. Change to its current level has no significant effect on climate. Calling it pollution is scientific incompetence. Calling it carbon makes it sound more ominous and distracts from attending to real atmospheric pollutants from coal such as particulates, mercury, NOX and sulfur (The US uses precipitators to remove these real pollutants. The Chinese… not so much).

    Two drivers have been identified that explain measured average global temperatures since before 1900 with 95% correlation and credible values back to 1610.

    The drivers and a graph of what they predict are given at

    http://agwunveiled.blogspot.com/

    CO2 change is not one of the drivers.

  40. Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7 says:

    Bill says:
    June 23, 2014 at 2:35 pm
    From your Google Calendar SPAM:

    If you want to include in your call a specific solution, carbon fee and dividend is a great one! It will:

    * Reduce CO2 emissions by 33 percent after 10 years, 52 percent after 20 years.

    * In the first 10 years, 2.2 million jobs would be added.

    * The refunded carbon tax would add between $80 billion and $90 billion to annual gross domestic product (GDP).

    * Because of reduced air pollution, by 2025, 13,000 lives would be saved annually.

    That’s four out of four demonstrably false claims in one email. Batting 1000 as we say on this side of the pond.

    Google is indeed the new Evil Empire. Even Gary Trudeau (AKA Doonesbury) has figured that out .

    “Don’t be Google” … “Perfect! Sounds ethical but doesn’t overpromise”.

    Yes Indeed.

  41. Steve in SC says:

    I will be happy when 97 % of jurists and 97 % of politicians are impeached, tried for treason, and executed.

  42. Steve in SC says:

    Then again, I am not a denier. I am a climate Infidel!

  43. P@ Dolan says:

    I’m with Anthony: it’s a start. Perhaps bigger than anyone things, believing the “idiot meter” percentages quoted.

    It limits the EPA’s power a great deal in that they cannot keep moving the bar every time they want to stymie power companies and force social change by making energy expensive. That’s a big deal no matter what they “got”. Secondly, the courts rule based on legal precedents and evidence presented, not so much the science, which we know—if the alarmists and politicians will not admit it—is far from settled. While this ruling is hardly a repudiation of how the Alarmists and the Green Lobby have abused the Precautionary Principle, it should be viewed as an important inroad against the ability of the whomever presently has control of the machinery of government to use it to try to coerce society by re-interpreting the Clean Air Act in some twisted fashion.

    Did anyone truly expect a total sea change? Sweeping reform from SCOTUS? Maybe they’d seen the error of their ways and would declare that contrary to a previous ruling, no, CO2 is NOT a pollutant?

    SCOTUS decisions are most often incremental changes to existing law. The fact that they did not cave totally to the Administration should be seen as very encouraging—given examples like the incredible decision in Kelo v. City of New London.

    No one swallows an elephant whole. Gotta start with the first bite.

    Until this decision, the EPA admitted no limits at all on their power to re-interpret the Law. This is a start, and we haven’t had time to analyze and figure all the probable and possible implications, yet.

  44. P@ Dolan says:

    ^^ Oops. spellllling: “…than anyone thinks…”

  45. kittyantonikwakfer says:

    Chris Magnuson says:
    “…Boycott the people who spread it,
    Tell them you’re going to boycott them and why,

    “and tell every body you see: who and why you will not associate yourself with, because of their teaching that the voodoo was real science. …”

    Agree! Don’t promote this nonsense by voluntarily associating in anyway with those who promulgate it.

    However, a very important point missed in your comment, and everyone else’s, is that it is Government Enforcers that make all the words spewed in the vast amount of legislation on the climate-related issue (and all others) more than ignorable, and the media hype along with it. Without the Enforcers, government politicians would be powerless; governments are coercion-based, every single one of them. So first and primary, it is the Enforcers who need to be recipients of negative Social Preferencing – NO voluntary association of any kind. When there are few individuals willing to take these jobs to initiate physical force on orders from higher up (or even without them) because most people will not associate with them if they do, Governments will be virtually toothless.

    Government is the problem and will remain the “thorn” that it is in the lives of most people – those not part of or friends of the “leadership” – as long as it is accepted as necessary for social order. However, changing that paradigm is a slow process for the majority of people since they cannot currently conceive of any other way a society can be fashioned.

    A new way of thinking is based on Social Meta-Needs, those environmental conditions of interaction that can exist within human society and stably self-order it so that each individual can gain all goods and services needed to optimally increase his lifetime happiness. The foundation for social meta-needs is shown to be a redefined ‘ethical egoism’ as the necessary purpose of any individual’s life. Public social preferencing becomes the ultimate arbiter of individual action and effector of a social order of maximal liberty.
    http://selfsip.org/fundamentals/socialmetaneeds.html for full understanding via a studied read, including links.

  46. Crispin in Waterloo but really in Ulaanbaatar says:

    “Can anyone tell me how does a US president acquire such absolute power”

    Nixon, that’s how. It is all about the acceptance of the EPA and its powers in the first place. It is not really the POTUS that has the power, it is the EPA. It is above ‘parliament’. It is the mix of decision making ability AND the power to enforce it that creates a tyrant. The shape is unimportant. It doesn’t have to be invested in one personage.

  47. According to EPA sites the US is responsible for 19% of the global CO2 emissions.
    According to EPA sites electric generation accounts for 38% of US CO2 emissions.
    A reduction of 30% in CO2 from US electric generation will reduce global CO2 emissions by 2.2%. (.19*.38*.30=0.0217) Woo-hoo-hoo-hoo.

    As I understand it the EPA reg limits power plants to 1,100 pounds of CO2 per MWh of output. Back of the envelope I came up w/ about 600 for a typical CCPP, 1,100 for simple, and 2,200 for typical coal. Now in all fairness shouldn’t cars/trucks/trains/planes be limited to some equivalent pounds CO2 per Hph?

  48. Reblogged this on gottadobetterthanthis and commented:
    Small potatoes, but it is a start. We must repeal the applicable laws and replace EPA with a small, chartered, and limited agency with direct Congressional oversight, not executive power.

  49. “Limited government” is an oxymoron. The Founders meant well, but they created a monster. The Environment, Global Warming, National Security, Terrorism…plus a monopoly on the use of force and the will to use it. What more do they need. Not to worry; it is all for our own good.

    “Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.” George Washington

  50. john says:

    Here comes the pitch….

    Climate policies could lift global GDP by $2.6 trillion/year – World Bank
    http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/06/24/world-bank-climate-change-idINKBN0EZ00L20140624

    (Reuters) – Global economic output could rise by as much as an additional $2.6 trillion a year, or 2.2 percent, by 2030 if government policies improve energy efficiency, waste management and public transport, according to a World Bank report released on Tuesday.

    The report, produced with philanthropic group ClimateWorks Foundation, analysed the benefits of ambitious policies to cut emissions from transport, industrial and building sectors as well as from waste and cooking fuels in Brazil, China, India, Mexico, the United States and the European Union.

    It found a shift to low-carbon transport and improved energy efficiency in factories, buildings and appliances could increase global growth in gross domestic product (GDP) by an extra $1.8 trillion, or 1.5 percent, a year by 2030.

    If financing and technology investment increased, global GDP could grow by an additional $2.6 trillion, or 2.2 percent, a year by 2030, the World Bank said.

    Climate policies could also avert at least 94,000 premature deaths a year from pollution-related diseases by 2030, improve crop productivity and prevent around 8.5 billion metric tons of greenhouse gases being emitted – the same as taking around 2 billion cars off the road.

    For example, if China deployed 70 million low-carbon cook stoves, it could avoid around 1 million premature deaths from pollution and reap almost $11 billion in economic benefits, the report showed.

    “These interventions should seem like no-brainers to governments around the world,” World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim told reporters on a conference call.

    “The report removes another false barrier, another false argument not to take action against climate change,” he added.

  51. Mac the Knife says:

    OK.
    We only got ‘3%’ improvement. However, with a lot of hard grassroots work, we canget the other 97% in the next 2 elections cycles! November 2014 is coming up fast with critical US House and Senate seats up for grabs. If we work really hard to put responsible conservatives in office now, it will further weaken Obama’s support as we head to the November 2016 election cycle.

    We have 2 choices.

    We can whine about the injustice of this megalomaniac socialist administration back and forth in blog echo chambers for the next 2 years and achieve nothing, or…..

    We can get off our collective keisters and work our buns off to get conservatives elected that will help limit further damage by limiting EPA funding and exercising greater discretion on judicial approvals to the federal and supreme court benches.
    Mac

  52. MarkG says:

    “Can anyone tell me how does a US president acquire such absolute power like in the days of monarchs Americans supposedly overthrew to become a republic?”

    Because Congress won’t impeach him, or shut down the EPA. It’s not so much that the President has acquired powers, as that Congress has given them to him through action or inaction.

    But watch the left squeal when a Republican president does the same.

  53. Pete j says:

    Using SCOTS logic ETA can then regulate water vapor as well as it is a much more prolific GHG. So Scale a reined in the fascists a little and the tailoring rule only applies to sources not otherwise regulated as majors. I guess one man’s compromise is another man’s judicial activism. The real question is what will the Marxist ETA determine is BACK for CO2 control when no industrial/commercial scale capture system has been shown to be technically robust or economically viable???

  54. Roger Sowell says:

    @ David S, re congressional powers to delegate regulatory authority.

    This is long, but it is complete. It gives the legal history and cases in support of the delegation authority.

    http://law.onecle.com/constitution/article-1/03-delegation-of-legislative-power.html

  55. Roger Sowell says:

    Carbon capture and sequestration has been demonstrated, proven, and is economical. Naysayers must consider the Skyonic technology, known as Skymine. It captures CO2 from an exhaust stack, then converts it chemically to sodium bicarbonate. The bicarb is then evaporated to a powder and sold. A plant is under construction near San Antonio, Texas, with startup later in 2014. The Skymine plant has a simple payback period of 3 years.

    see http://skyonic.com/

  56. David L. Hagen says:

    Dave Yaussy
    Thanks for your legal review:
    UNRINGING THE BELL: TIME FOR EPA TO RECONSIDER ITS GREENHOUSE GAS ENDANGERMENT FINDING
    The most important issue is the Judiciary/Supreme Court taking the EPA’s judgment and its failure or refusal to hold the EPA accountable on the science of the endangerment finding, especially when the EPA refused to follow its own required policies.

    The next issue is “any” endangerment, with no accountability for costs of mitigation vs accommodation. The bald statement by the EPA that there is “endangerment” now means We the People will be coerced to pay whatever politically driven bureaucrats dictate.
    The lemmings are driving the law.

    That will need to be explicitly redressed by Congress.

  57. “…with a lot of hard grassroots work…We can get off our collective keisters and work our buns off to get conservatives elected that will help limit further damage by limiting EPA funding and exercising greater discretion on judicial approvals to the federal and supreme court benches.”

    Sounds good and by all means have a go at it. However, that is so twentieth century. That boat has sailed. What we have now is a ruling class divided into two parties. Our present form of government is an oligarchy. That’s what is meant by “We can’t vote our way out of this.”

  58. Allen says:

    albertalad, only in Obama’s wildest dreams could he have the power that a Canadian Prime Minister has. Obama the POTUS has executive power, while a Canadian PM has both executive and legislative power when his/her party has a majority.

    The POTUS power is checked by both the Congress and the SCOTUS. Obama is doing enough damage with his executive power, but imagine how bad it could get if the Democrats had both the Senate and the House? That would ruin America.

  59. P@ Dolan says:

    @ Chris Magnuson says:
    June 23, 2014 at 2:15 pm
    Agreed. Read Ian Wishart’s Air Con. He provides names, links, references; he discusses the origins, does a “follow the money”, exposes a great deal of corruption. It’s a tour-de-force, and he updated it once in 2010, following Climategate. I’d like to see him update it annually!

    The profiteering by rent-seeking universities/”researchers” looking for grants; by corporations and especially Green NGOs; by politicians—everyone using a good ‘crisis’ that got its start by playing on the gullibility of do-gooders who, innocently enough, wanted to clean up polution—and for anyone who was around in the late- ’60s/early- ’70s, you might recall how bad it was in some places. Not just or even necessarily the air polution, but simply garbage strewn along the highways. Even into the early ’80s, before RCRA, TSCA, and the “Superfund”.

    But if you read the post in yet another terrific link provided by @Roger Sowell, there is room for hope: in modern SCOTUS decisions (if I read it correctly), since the 1930s, it has not happened that SCOTUS went against Congress when they delegated even vaguely-defined legislative powers to the Executive Branch or an agency. Previous calls that did go against such delegations were because they were undefined powers with essentially no limits on the Executive Branch, to which they were delegated.

    Significantly, per the article, “Since 1935, the Court has not struck down a delegation to an administrative agency.” Instead, “the Court’s solution has been to reject delegation challenges in all but the most extreme cases, and to accept delegations of vast powers to the President or to administrative agencies”; providing fairly broad, vaguely defined limits: “In determining what [Congress] may do in seeking assistance from another branch, the extent and character of that assistance must be fixed according to common sense and the inherent necessities of the government co-ordination” (J. W. Hampton, Jr. & Co. v. United States, 276 U.S. 394, 406 (1928)). No need to elaborate on the problems inherent involved here; we only have to ask the question, who determines “common sense” or “inherent necessities”?

    Against this historical background, and setting aside the distraction of what I believe are completely irrelevant percentages, this new decision seems to be very significant: outside of two decisions in 1935 which were very different from the current case (in one, Congress “left the matter to the President without standard or rule, to be dealt with as he pleased,” and in the other, “authorize[d] the making of codes to prescribe them.” Sort of like, “We have to pass this law so that we can see what’s in it”…. Sorry. Digression…), this is a completely new approach by SCOTUS. I’m no expert, but if the article in Roger’s link is accurate, this decision appears to be the first real limitation that SCOTUS has put on a Congressional delegation of legislative powers in nearly 100 years.

    That is a non-trivial event. Again, I think the percentages tossed about are a distraction from the real story, and are receiving too much attention for the little significance they have.

    Also again, I’m with Anthony on this one: this is reason for hope.

  60. empiresentry says:

    john says:
    June 23, 2014 at 5:43 pm
    Here comes the pitch….

    You are so correct and its so sad. The lemmings will proudly parrot this throughout the Pravda media sphere. while ignoring all facts, historical promises and details.

    That’s the same pitch they gave on everything else…that it will all reduce the prices of everything and created more money. The same used for Sticulus (which failed) the economic reforms (which failed), the Jobs Bills (which failed) and everything else Obama and Krugman have been pushing.

    The very same lemmings think higher taxes on small business will create jobs.
    think higher taxes on oil companies will lower the price of fuel.
    think raising taxes while keeping loopholes will increase revenues.
    think higher taxes on fuel will lower the cost of food.
    think elimination of proof of identity will reduce voter fraud.
    think reducing legal gun ownership will reduce the number of illegal guns.
    think raising the cost of healthcare insurance will lower the cost for everyone.
    think putting people into homes they cannot afford will grow the middle class.
    think Stimulus will create 4 million jobs.
    think Obamacare will create 4 million jobs and turn the economy around.
    think monitoring your emails, bank and credit cards, twitters, GPS and phone calls will eliminate bad people.

    and they also think closing down energy plants will create more reliable, cheaper energy for all.

  61. Ken L. says:

    This from Forbes:

    “The fact that regulating all GHG sources “would place plainly excessive demands on limited governmental resources is alone a good reason for rejecting” the idea, Scalia wrote. More threatening for the EPA was this passage:

    ‘When an agency claims to discover in a long-extant statute an unheralded power to regulate “a significant portion of the American economy,” we typically greet its announcement with a measure of skepticism. …We expect Congress to speak clearly if it wishes to assign to an agency decisions of vast “economic and political significance.’ ”

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/danielfisher/2014/06/23/tread-carefully-with-greenhouse-gas-regs-court-warns-epa/

    I think this is reason for optimism down the line.

  62. Rob says:

    These Lawyers/Judges should have never ruled CO2 a toxic pollutant. It`s the essence of life.
    Pure Idiots or purely political.

  63. Hoser says:

    The court said any industries currently regulated for other pollutants can be regulated for GHGs. The part that bothers me is they can get away with calling CO2 a pollutant. They say it’s settled law. At some point, I hope regarding this issue the EPA and SCOTUS will be viewed by future generations as being just as shameless and destructive as those running the Salem witch trials. Where is there any limit to where legal precedent can go? Any sufficiently long series of bad decisions in principle could lead to any result imaginable. In the end, only we can impose such limits. If the court says the sky is green would we say no it isn’t green? I think we are there now.

  64. DD More says:

    john says: June 23, 2014 at 5:43 pm
    Here comes the pitch….
    Climate policies could lift global GDP by $2.6 trillion/year – World Bank
    (Reuters) – Global economic output could rise by as much as an additional $2.6 trillion a year, or 2.2 percent, by 2030 if government policies improve energy efficiency, waste management and public transport, according to a World Bank report released on Tuesday.

    Would that be the same World Bank and IMF that has a 4 step plan for any nation to be taken over and stripped of assets.
    Step One is Privatization – Step Two Capital Market Liberalization. – Step Three: Market-Based Pricing w/ Step-Three-and-a-Half: what Stiglitz calls, “The IMF riot.” – Step Four of what the IMF and World Bank call their “poverty reduction strategy”.
    From an interview and documents of Joseph Stiglitz former Chief Economist of the World Bank.

    http://www.gregpalast.com/the-globalizer-who-came-in-from-the-cold/

    or search – Greg Palast secret documents IMF’s and World Bank

  65. David S says:

    Roger Sowell says:
    June 23, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    @ David S, re congressional powers to delegate regulatory authority.

    This is long, but it is complete. It gives the legal history and cases in support of the delegation authority.

    Roger thank you for the info, of which I was not aware. But I stand my ground on this issue. Either we have a Constitution that means something or we don’t. Unfortunately we cannot rely on any of the three branches of government to do their job which is to support the Constitution. All three branches find reasons for exceptions or deviations from the Constitution. As a result we are gradually losing our Constitution and when we lose the Constitution we lose America. Consider what the Constitution does; it defines our government and it protects all of our rights. And look at the recent violations:
    -The NSA spys on the emails and phone calls of millions of Americans without a search warrant and without even probable cause to get a warrant,
    -The TSA conducts highly invasive searches of millions of American air travelers without a warrant or probable cause to get a warrant.
    All of this is in violation of the 4th amendment but is claimed to be justified because of the fear of terrorism. In fact you are a hundred times more likely to die in a car accident than by a terrorist attack in the US. You are also 100 times more likely to kill yourself than to be killed by a terrorist. And you are several hundred times more likely to die from a preventable medical error than from a terrorist.
    -The NDAA act of 2012 authorizes the Armed Forces to indefinitely detain, without trial, anyone suspected of involvement with a terrorist organization. That includes American citizens. Doesn’t that violate the 5th and 6th amendments? It precludes the requirement for an indictment by a grand jury, as well as the right to due process of law both of which are required by the 5th amendment. And it certainly by-passes the 6th amendment right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury.
    -So there goes the 4th, 5th and 6th amendments. That’s 30% of the Bill of rights lost all because the three branches of government are justifying exceptions to the Constitution.
    -Add to that list, the delegation of the legislative authority of Congress, to unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats. .And that’s only a few examples. At what point do we say America is no longer a free country? Without the constitution America could be just like NAZI Germany or North Korea or any totalitarian society that doesn’t respect human rights. Will we admit we no longer live in a free country when we find ourselves in a concentration camp or when we are facing a firing squad for having committed no crime? Won’t that be a little too late? We should demand strict adherence to the Constitution from all Representatives, Senators, judges and presidents. If we don’t, we will see the Constitution eroded away until there is nothing left of it and we will then find ourselves living in George Orwell’s 1984. I don’t think we’ll like it much.

  66. Titan28 says:

    A big problem here is that both sides of the Supreme Court, Democratic and Republican, are climate change imbeciles. ALL the justices accept the argument that human activity alone is causing the planet to heat up. They all believe climate change, whatever the heck the term means, is bad and must be stopped. Heck, think about what they call “settled law.” And lastly, don’t forget the Massachusetts decision, in which the court found that CO2 was a poison. So, if and when the SC comes out on the correct side in some future EPA case, it will be completely by accident. They don’t have a clue. Also, if I understand this convoluted decision, the court stopped the EPA from regulating supermarkets and hamburger joints they way it regulates energy plants. IOW, the EPA was given FULL clearance to continue its attack on the coal industry.

  67. Bill W says:

    I’m not sure why it is so difficult for so many to continually misunderstand what is going on here.

    In passing the Clean Air Act, Congress expressed its intent to reduce pollutants in our air and directed the newly-formed EPA to write detailed regulations to accomplish its purpose. Unfortunately, Congress was inconsistent in its use of the term ‘pollutant’ in the initial legislation, and despite several major re-writes of the law, Congress has not cured this inconsistency.

    EPA has written many thousands of pages of regulations to limit specific pollutants, notably the six ‘criteria pollutants’ – lead, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, ozone, and particulate matter. Among these are requirements that businesses use control technologies to limit the emission of these criteria pollutants in new and existing processes.

    Carbon dioxide was not considered a pollutant when Congress passed the Clean Air Act nor was it when most EPA regulations were promulgated. It only became a pollutant when EPA submitted its ‘Endangerment Finding’ which alleged that human health and safety were being threatened by emissions of greenhouse gases, a finding that the courts have (so far) supported by their rulings.

    Given the Endangerment Finding, EPA took it upon itself to develop new regulations for carbon dioxide releases which would be similar to those for the six criteria pollutants. Unfortunately, nearly every human, commercial, industrial, and governmental process emits CO2. The EPA tried to take a short cut (thus limiting the burden on itself and the crushing burden on the U.S. economy) by setting a threshold level for CO2 emissions and requiring action only on those processes that exceeded that threshold.

    In the very carefully written Supreme Court ruling this week, Justice Scalia demolished the EPA’s arbitrary creation of this threshold level for regulation; as Congress had not authorized the threshold, he stated that the EPA had no right to impose it. However, Congress HAD authorized EPA to write rules to limit pollutants in general, and since greenhouse gases are now considered pollutants, Scalia reasoned that EPA had authority to take action. His solution to the massive burden that this would impose on society and the EPA was clever – businesses not already subject to EPA regulation (mostly rules written to limit criteria pollutants) would not be forced to comply with greenhouse gas limitations; businesses already burdened with compliance obligations for criteria pollutants would also have to install control technologies to limit CO2.

    The important thing here is that Justice Scalia maintained his legendary deference to Congress in this ruling. If Congress is unhappy with the implications of laws it has passed, then Congress needs to pass new laws. If they don’t want the EPA to regulate greenhouse gases, pass a law that prohibits EPA from doing so.

    A couple of posters on this thread blame the GOP-led House for the current situation. I don’t agree. With the other party in control of the Senate and White House, there is little that the House could have done. Perhaps it might be more interesting to ask why the EPA’s role wasn’t clarified/limited when the GOP had control of the House, Senate, and Presidency from 2002 to 2006.

  68. RACookPE1978 says:

    But, at that time, the EPA WAS run by “honest” (or at least “not-deliberately destructive”) bureaucrats and administration-selected senior policy-makers who were NOT deliberately destructive to the national and Internationale economies in a “war against energy” to deliberately destroy people and kill innocents abroad in their search for a new “Gaea on earth” free from all but their self-selected-humans. (I’d say “heaven on earth” but these people are also on a self-declared war against religion, and their crusade (oops, there’s that religion-thingy again) prevents all logic and reason by their hatred for western economies and efficiencies.)

  69. Editorial in 6/24/2014 WSJ: A Constitutional Tutorial for Obama

    Justice Scalia… writes that it is “patently unreasonable — not to say outrageous — for EPA to insist on seizing expansive power that it admits the statute is not designed to grant.”

    The act is “not a command to regular,” and neither is Mass v. EPA, he reiterates. More to the point, “An agency has no power to ‘tailor’ legislation to bureaucratic policy goals by rewriting unambiguous statutory terms.”

    The Court did still preserve 7-2 the Mass v. EPA prerogative to regulate carbon in other contexts, such as requiring new or substantially modified power sources to install “best available control technology.” But the ruling says this authority is not “unbounded,” which suggests the Court is warning EPA to tread carefully when exercising “extravagant statutory power over the national economy.”

    That could include the rules for existing power sources that the EPA rolled out earlier this month. They are grounded in an obscure catch-all clause of the Clean Air Act that wasn’t before the Court in Monday’s case. Section 111(d) runs only a few hundred words, yet the EPA is claiming unprecedented authority to command the states to create cap-and-tax programs or otherwise ration energy use……

    That “best available control technology” phrase will be the focus of technology for carbon capture. All the pilot and demonstration capture projects the EPA cites are behind schedule and way over budget.

    The vital next stage – which is where we are right now – is the successful demonstration of fully integrated, large-scale CCS systems fitted to commercial-scale power stations. (Worldcoal.org


  70. What is the EPA Hiding from the Public?

    Rep. Lamar Smith (TX), WSJ Opinion 6/24/2014

    The climate is changing and, yes, humans play a rule. But that does not mean, as [EPA] Administrator Gina McCarthy would have us believe that the debate — over how much the climate is changing, how big a rule humans play and what can reasonably done about it — is over. Still less does it mean that anyone who questions her agency’s actions, particularly the confidential research it uses to justify multimillion and billion dollar air rules, is a denier at war with science.

    The EPA’s regulatory process today is a closed loop. The agency funds the scientific research it uses to support its regulations, and it picks the supposedly independent (but usually agency-funded) scientists to review it. When the regulations are challenged, the courts defer to the agency on scientific issues. But the agency refuses to make public the scientific research it uses.
    ….
    Speaking before the National Academy of Sciences in late April, [McCarthy} defended her agency’s need to protect data “from those who are not qualified to analyze it.”

    The EPA essentially decides who is or is not allowed access to the scientific research they use — research that is paid for with public funds, appropriated by Congress, on behalf of American taxpayers. This is wholly improper.
    ….
    Virtually all of the EPA’s health claims for its latest power-plant rules, including that they would save thousands of lives a year, are based on data that haven’t been made public. In any event, for most of the EPA’s 2030 projections, a majority of the health benefits clamed have nothing to do with carbon dioxide. They come from reductions in air pollutants already regulated by the EPA such as particulate matter and ozone.

    Which further underscores the subterfuge of the term “carbon pollution.” Only by calling CO2 a pollutant can they cover it under the Clean Air Act. But there is no way they can show benefits of reduced CO2 “pollution” remotely approaching the costs of curtailment. So they must mix it in with other pollutants that they already regulate under CAA.

    35 years ago the Clean Air Act was about stopping people from ADDING 330,000 ppb of lead to gasoline. Today’s EPA regs are about REDUCING 48 ppb to 4 ppb of mercury naturally occurring in coal. That’s five orders of magnitude. The FDA says 1000 ppb of mercury in fish is safe to eat. 2 ppb mercury in water is safe to drink. The EPA, without legislative approval, wants society to incur astronomical costs, and who knows what unintended consequences, to clean coal to a level where it is almost safe to drink before we burn it. I think the subject mercury regs are idiotic, supported by pseudoscience, improper statistical and fincancial models, sourced from religious fanatics, and available for review only by those faithful to the catechism and scripture.

  71. Many liberal bloggers – and even the EPA itself – have called this a victory for the carbon emissions standards the EPA has proposed earlier this month.

    If it’s such a victory, why have the three major TV news networks ignored this Supreme Court ruling?

  72. jim2 says:

    Really – I’m disgusted at the headlines that say Obama’s carbon plans were limited. He got by unscaythed. Hopefully, Congress will take CO2 from the purview of the EPA. Maybe the new Congress after 11/2014.

  73. philjourdan says:

    @Allen – They did for about 40 years – 55-94. But they were not all progressives then

  74. stas peterson says:

    Roger Sowell,

    Pardon me, but you have your cranium so far inserted into your cloacal cavity as to beg the question as to whether you any longer sentient. From your post, I adduce you are not.

  75. milodonharlani says:

    stas peterson says:
    June 26, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    You mean raise the question, but as to your main point, affirmativo!

    Sorry, but a pet peeve of mine. Begging the question is the name of a logical fallacy, which essentially is assuming what you intend to demonstrate. It doesn’t mean the same as raising a question.

  76. Rascal says:

    Data that is not of national security interest, funded by taxpayer monies such as that produced for the EPA, and other government agencies, should be available in unaltered form to any taxpayer, and at no cost.

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