EPA Rules … and how they don't follow their own

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Most folks would not be surprised if I were to make the claim that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) did not properly consider the science when it issued its “Endangerment Finding” saying that CO2 was a pollutant and a danger to humanity. It is that scientifically unsupported finding that allows them to regulate CO2.

And you likely would not be surprised if I made the claim that:

1. The EPA did not release the findings supporting its Technical Support Document (TSD), as is required by law. Instead, it has kept them secret.

2. The EPA was supposed to get a panel of outside scientists to provide an impartial analysis of the science. Instead, it put an EPA employee on the panel. If I were a cynical sort of fellow, I’d say that the employee in question was instructed to find in favor of the Persecution rather than in favor of the Defense …

3. The EPA has different regulations for normal decisions and for a “highly influential scientific assessment”. Anyone with half a brain would certainly say that a ruling that will cost billions and billions of dollars and affect nearly every single business in America is a “highly influential scientific assessment”. However, the half-brains at the EPA says not so, they say it’s just an ordinary old plain vanilla assessment, no need for special caution or extra due diligence …

Most folks know that I’m a climate heretic, so it’s no surprise that I might hold such outrageous views. However, here’s what might surprise you.

Those are not my views. They are the published views of the US EPA Office of the Inspector General, as expressed in their latest official report on the question.

Now, in any well run organization, this official finding by the Inspector General of flagrant flouting of the scientific requirements would call for an immediate do-over … but this is not a well run organization, it is the US Government, sub-species EPA.

So what did the EPA bureaucrats do in response to the IG’s Report?

Well, they promised that they would never, never ever do such a thing again, cross their heart they won’t.

Don’t you feel better now? Good to know that the government has our back.

Hey, if you don’t believe me, read the US EPA Inspector General’s Report (summary and full report [710 Kb PDF]). As the saying goes … it’s worse than we thought …

And the AGW supports claim that we skeptics are the ones “denying the science”???

Regards to everyone,

w.

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HankH

If I were a cynical sort of fellow, I’d say that the employee in question was instructed to find in favor of the Persecution rather than in favor of the Defense …

I’m thinking you meant to say Prosecution but Persecution might actually convey a more accurate meaning.

Terry Jackson

Please tell us you were not surprised. Managing expectations and all.

Naw … you’re kidding right? Govt agency ignoring ‘the process’ (and maybe even the science) – that happens?
What does ‘the policy lass’ say about the ignoring the policy part?
Crickets?
.

Al Gored

Related news…
““Hiring the 230,000 full-time employees necessary to produce the 1.4 billion work hours required to address the actual increase in [CO2] permitting functions would result in an increase in Title V administration costs of $21 billion per year,” the EPA wrote in the court brief.”
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/09/26/epa-regulations-would-require-230000-new-employees-21-billion/#ixzz1ZJeCX8il

Darren Parker

The beauracracy is expanding to cater for the expanding beauracracy.

Doug in Seattle

I am not in least surprised that established policy was abandoned in this effort. They are saving the planet, and they have only four years to accomplish their work.
They would have much preferred to have a new law, but they have a great crew of NGO and university trained experts who know how to get stuff done without such trivialities as laws.
I predict that no matter which way the election goes next year, we will see a great flurry of rule making happening between the first week in November 2012 and the third week of January 2013.

Rhoda Ramirez

I don’t think that the EPA has ever been a non-political entity. It needs its wings clipped – badly.

CRS, Dr.P.H.

The estimated direct labor and travel costs for this report are $297,385.
Money well-spent, in my estimation….

Neil Jones

Al Gored says:
September 28, 2011 at 10:21 pm
“Hiring the 230,000 full-time employees necessary to produce the 1.4 billion work hours required to address the actual increase in [CO2] permitting functions would result in an increase in Title V administration costs of $21 billion per year,” the EPA wrote in the court brief.”
The green jobs they promised have to come from somewhere.

Meanwhile, the Canadian equivalent of the E.P.A., Environment Canada…
Budget cuts pummel Environment Canada
Grants, operating and capital expenditures down $70 million – a 31 per cent decrease
Read more: http://www.canada.com/business/Budget+cuts+pummel+Environment+Canada/5471122/story.html#ixzz1ZK7mZswf

Larry in Texas

And unsurprisingly, having postponed the issuance of their final rules (for political reasons, namely, the election campaign of their ultimate boss Mr. Obama), no lawsuit challenging their endangerment finding can be commenced or maintained. EPA hopes everyone forgets later on, then they will issue their otherwise unlawful rules. Very unsurprising, indeed.
If and when the lawsuit is finally brought, if I were the attorney bringing it (oh, I so wish I was), Willis, you’d be one of my first witnesses.

MartinW

No, Willis, you are not a climate heretic. The true climate heretics are the AGW closed minds fanatics (who I call climate deceivers).

Willis Eschenbach

Al Gored says:
September 28, 2011 at 10:21 pm

Related news…
““Hiring the 230,000 full-time employees necessary to produce the 1.4 billion work hours required to address the actual increase in [CO2] permitting functions would result in an increase in Title V administration costs of $21 billion per year,” the EPA wrote in the court brief.”
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/09/26/epa-regulations-would-require-230000-new-employees-21-billion/#ixzz1ZJeCX8il

I saw that, but I haven’t been able to track down the underlying document yet (the court brief) so I haven’t discussed it. The current number of EPA employees is about 18,000, so the claim set off my bad number detector. I hate to get caught passing on bad information.
w.

rbateman

If the Green Jobs are the expansion of the EPA and it’s budget, then the Green is actually caused by cutting off the circulation of blood to the economy, resulting in more jobs for the Gang at EPA.
Or, more precisely, GangGreen Jobs. So what if 10 private sector jobs are consumed for each new GangGreen Job.

ken Methven

Willis,
More of the paper trail. Specific references to the costs etc are on page 27. http://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/tailoring-rule-case.pdf
Ken

Willis, don’t you ever get tired of hitting home runs?☺
This prroblem relates directly to Bastiat’s broken window fallacy. Every invented, unnecessary government job sucks two+ jobs out of the productive sector.

old44

HankH says:
No, I think he knows what he was saying.

oeman50

EPA did this again concerning the regulation of GHGs. They issued the “Tailoring Rule” after the endangerment finding. In this rule, they determined actually complying with the exact provisions of the Clean Air Act would lead to an “absurd result.” (This is because the authors and the congressmen that drafted and passed the CAA had no intensions of regulating CO2. It’s like digging a hole with an axe, it is a tool not appropriate for the job.)
As long as it leads to more rules and more control, EPA usually thinks “absurd” results are fine, no matter what the costs or impacts there are on the regulatees. But at least they realized that, even if they could ramp up EPA manpower in response, it would still grind the entire country to a halt. So EPA just changed the rules passed by Congress, which is possibly illegal. Rules are for the little people, not EPA.

EPA will go ahead no matter who is “elected” in 2012. Romney will be the “opposition party” nominee, and he’s just as firmly in the pocket of Wall Street as Obama.
In fact Romney will find it easier to push green terror, because he won’t have to fight Congress. The Dems will go along with him because they enthusiastically agree, the Reps will go along with him because they’re mindless partisans. Only James Inhofe will stand against it, and one man can’t do anything.
(If Christie gets into the race, it could change things. He’s verbally pro-Green but he’s also thoroughly sensible, so he might make some sane decisions. Wild card.)

Pascvaks

Congress’s “Power of the Purse” sure doesn’t mean much if it’s the size of a MacTruck and you can’t easily pick it up, swing it swiftly, and bash an uppity agency’s head in. Does it?

Claude Harvey

Compliance with pesky laws has never been a high priority for the current administration. Once you’ve set out on a crusade to save mankind from itself, an “end justifies the means” mentality inevitably sets in. That’s the seed that grew into practically every oppressive government in modern history.

“(If Christie gets into the race, it could change things. He’s verbally pro-Green but he’s also thoroughly sensible, so he might make some sane decisions. Wild card.)”
Drudge has a quote from Christie stating that no new coal plants will be permitted in NJ, and he intends to make NJ a leader in wind energy.
Christie is deeper in the tank for AGW than even Romney.

Only Rick Perry has had the courage to call Social Security a Ponzi scheme and AGW a fraud. He has other liabilities, including an incompetent campaign staff, but he is the only one to say that the Emperor has no clothes.
Regards,
Steamboat Jack (Jon Jewett’s evil twin)

Juice

According to Climate Progress, the conclusion of the IG report was that:

EPA met statutory requirements for rulemaking and generally followed requirements and guidance related to ensuring the quality of the supporting technical information.

http://thinkprogress.org/romm/2011/09/28/330967/inhofe-inspector-general-epa-endangerment-finding/

Danny V.

Al Gored says:
September 28, 2011 at 10:21 pm
“Hiring the 230,000 full-time employees necessary to produce the 1.4 billion work hours required to address the actual increase in [CO2] permitting functions would result in an increase in Title V administration costs of $21 billion per year,” the EPA wrote in the court brief.”
———————————
That works out to $91,304.35 per employee annually. Makes sense given you have to allow for benefits on top of wages. Where are these new emplyees going to work? I would double that number for the new offices, rental space etc.
My estimate is $50 Billion a year – a nice round number .
Go big or go home – right?

Mark Wilson says:
September 29, 2011 at 5:42 am
. . . Christie is deeper in the tank for AGW than even Romney.

If we are going to have any success reining in the EPA, we must elect a Climate Realist President and a conservative Senate. Unfortunately, so far the only Republican who has taken a strong position against the Alarmists is Rick Perry. I say ‘unfortunately’, because it appears there is less there than meets the eye.
Back in 2008 I sent Mitt Romney a list of talking points to use against the Alarmists, with the suggestion that a courageous stance on the issue could propel him to the nomination. I never received a reply, not even from a lowly staffer. Now I know why.
Unhappily, none of the Republican candidates appear to know any more about the science than the current occupant of the Oval Office, so they are as susceptible as Everyman to the confident Alarmist claim that “98% of all scientists agree that ‘climate change’ is a problem.”
How about inviting all the candidates (declared and not) to a Climate Realist Advance (not a ‘retreat’!): a weekend of seminars and discussions with luminaries like Richard Lindzen, Roy Spencer, Anthony Watts, Lord Monckton, Willis Eschenbach, etc., etc.? I’d be willing to help out.
/Mr Lynn

Max Hugoson

Willis:
Your new name: “Dogbert”. Scott Adams showed you at work here –
http://search.dilbert.com/comic/Gallon
Just like selling water for $$$ (that costs pennies to put in a bottle), you do a “hose job” on the EPA (US Government agency) with another US Government agency.
You accomplish your goal, and don’t even get your hands dirty.
As Dilbert says, “You are an evil little (skeptic)..”
Max

ozspeaksup

ron Paul also would be a better option,
seems a nice guy, so maybe its better he doesnt make pres.
the honest ones seem to get shot.

Mark T

Smokey says:
September 29, 2011 at 2:45 am

Willis, don’t you ever get tired of hitting home runs?☺

The opposite, of course, applied to those Willis does such a good job of exposing, was expressed by Will Ferrell and Danny McBride in Land of the Lost
Dr. Rick Marshall being chased around by Grumpy:
Will Standon: “You ever get tired of being wrong?”
Dr. Rick Marshall: “I do, I really do!”
Mark

Monroe

Having gone though much of what the US is going through presently here in BC during the 90’s , I think the Lefts time for honoring itself will soon come to an end. Many average voters sit back and watch and watch and then down comes the hammer. I think the US is heading towards a new age of conservative thinking and ecomomic responsibity. If things go “right” Rubeo could be running for Presdent in 2020……….after serving as Vice President for 8 years.

Speed

It may be that Willis was right to hold off commenting on the EPA 230,000 hiring story.

No, EPA Is Not Hiring 230,000 Workers To Implement Climate Rules
EPA explained in a court brief that by phasing in greenhouse gas regulations and focusing on large sources of emissions, the agency avoids a scenario in which 230,000 new workers would be required. Somehow, the Daily Caller’s Matthew Boyle concluded from this that “The EPA is asking taxpayers to fund up to 230,000 new government workers.” Other conservative media outlets, including Fox News, repeated Boyle’s false report.
http://mediamatters.org/research/201109270014

Johnnythelowery

Good report Willis.
CONCLUSION: there is a reason for the treason!!
Where is Henry the Viii when you need him!!!

Rhoda Ramirez says:
September 28, 2011 at 10:53 pm
Rhonda,
When EPA was formed and the Clean Air Act was written, decisions were based on good science.
I know because that was shortly after I was hired as a branch chief in the Economics Effects Research Division of the National Air Pollution Control Administration. In the process of integrating into the new EPA, the branches were separated and renamed the Ecology Division. Portions were transferred to other locations and those of us who were left were assigned to other research organizations. I ended up working in the Atmospheric Sciences Research Laboratory,with atmospheric chemists, meteoroligists, aerosol scientists, analytical chemists, and automotive engineers. There were a lots of PhD and Masters degrees at the GS-13 to GS-15 level. These people were not political appointees. Our primary job (mandated by the Clean Air Act) was to do the research needed to update criteria documents every five years. The results of that research had to be published in peer reviewed journals before it could be included in those documents. A few of us had the additional responsibility of updation chapters in the criteria documents.
There are several layers of political appointees (who serve at the pleasure of the commander-in-chief)(GS-16+ equiv.). In order to be able to do your job (get funded) and possibly get promoted, you have to find favor with these appointees. That is how the political influence over research has grown in EPA. One reason I retired from EPA early was I recognized the effects of this growing influence on the science. That was over 20 years ago. Ironically, shortly after I retired, EPA hired me as a consultant to rewrite a chapter in a criteria document.
The Clean Air Act requires that control regulations be based on the best evidence of the effects of pollutants as reported in these criteria documents. The two catagories of effects are health and welfare. When there are health effects, regulations are designed to prevent those effects regardless of the cost of controls. When there are only welfare effects, cost-benefit economic analysis is required. No one has claimed that atmospheric levels of CO2 is a direct health effect. If there are any effects they should be classified as effects on welfare requiring cost-benefit analysis.
These requirements were not followed when EPA produced it’s findings based on the politically motivated IPPC report. They did ask Dr. Alan Carlin to review the TSD and gave him a week to do it. http://www.carlineconomics.com/. His review was rejected and he was assigned other tasks not related to CO2. Alan went to work for EPA shortly after I did and retired soon after his review went public. Alan recognized the errors of economic analysis based on what-if models of “climate science”. I expect that EPA will eventually end up in court over this if congress is not able to change their ways.

Cliff Huston

Speed, please spare us the spin.
The rest of the story:
http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/politico-confirms-21-billion-epa-climate-reg
“The EPA court filing essentially confirms IER’s predictions of economic Armageddon should EPA regulate greenhouse gasses. EPA wants to get around this problem by rewriting the statutory 100 ton pollutant limit. But the EPA has no legal authority to rewrite the law in this manner. Hence the lawsuit.”
“Bottom line, even the Obama administration admits it would cost $21 billion to regulate carbon using the Clean Air Act.”
http://dailycaller.com/2011/09/29/editors-notebook-230000-reasons-to-get-an-epa-story-right/
“In a nutshell, when the EPA won the right to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act, it turned into a much bigger job than anyone expected. So the EPA argued that it should be allowed to follow a “Tailoring Rule” in order to “phase-in” the plan by regulating only the biggest greenhouse-gas emitters first, before moving on to regulate others whose emissions are more modest (but still above the “statutory threshold” for regulation).
“The agency was in court to ask a court for permission to do this. It’s presumably the only way the EPA can avoid the $21 billion hiring spree we wrote about — one that its own lawyers said would be an “absurd” outcome.”
“The fly in the ointment is that this “Tailoring Rule” may also be absurd, since it doesn’t seem to comply with the Clean Air Act. That law doesn’t allow the government to pick and choose which global-warming “polluters” to regulate and which to leave alone. So we may have an all-or-nothing scenario in which the EPA’s hands are tied, and so are taxpayers’.”
“And even if EPA manages to convince a court to make an exception, it seems committed to regulating everyone — at the full $21 billion cost — at some point down the road. “[T]he Tailoring Rule,” EPA writes in its brief, “is calculated to move toward eventual full compliance with the statutory threshold.” EPA adds that it intends to get there “as quickly as possible.” At present, the EPA is under a deadline to get it done by 2016.”

Curiousgeorge

The EPA is not concerned with anything except empire building. Nor do they care about the economic impacts on the general economy. That’s not in their charter. In fact they are prohibited from assessing the direct or indirect costs to the economy, and only do a half assed job of guessing at the immediate impacts on the businesses that are directly affected by the rule.
The problem of stopping or even slowing down a powerful agency such as the EPA is similar to hunting bull elephants. You need a really big gun and precise marksmanship. So far, we’ve only been spraying it with a .22, which at tbest,only pisses them off.

Speed

Cliff Huston said, “Speed, please spare us the spin.”
Not spin.

The critics are correct that the Daily Caller flubbed the initial story. The numbers aren’t new and the EPA isn’t asking for billions of dollars for tens-of-thousands of new hires. But the critics miss the real significance of EPA’s arguments, which is that treating greenhouse gases as “pollutants” under the Clean Air Act, as called for in Massachusetts v. EPA, leads to absurd results.
First, the EPA is not asking for additional resources. What the EPA is asking for is permission to ignore the plain text of the Clean Air Act so as to make the task of regulating greenhouse gases more manageable. The brief at issue is quite clear on this point. The specific figures are an illustration of how it is simply unmanageable to try and regulate such emissions, carbon dioxide in particular, under statutory provisions designed for traditional air pollutants that are emitted by far fewer facilities. The obvious answer to this problem would be to recognize that greenhouse gases are not what Congress had in mind when it told the EPA to regulate “pollutants” under the Clean Air Act, but this option is foreclosed by Massachusetts v. EPA.
http://volokh.com/2011/09/29/does-the-epa-need-21-billion-to-hire-230000-more-employees/

The text that set this all off is in this brief:
http://www.eenews.net/assets/2011/09/16/document_pm_02.pdf

EPA studied and considered the breadth and depth of the projected administrative burdens in the Tailoring Rule. There, EPA explained that immediately applying the literal PSD statutory threshold of 100/250 tpy to greenhouse gas emissions, when coupled with the “any increase” trigger for modifications under 42 U.S.C. §§7479, 7411(a)(4), would result in annual PSD permit applications submitted to State and local permitting agencies to increase nationwide from 280 to over 81,000 per year, a 300-fold increase. 75 Fed. Reg. at 31,535-40, 31,554. Following a comprehensive analysis, EPA estimated that these additional PSD permit applications would require State permitting authorities to add 10,000 full-time employees and incur additional costs of $1.5 billion per year just to process these applications, a 130-fold increase in the costs to States of administering the PSD program. Id. at 31,539/3. Sources needing operating permits would jump from 14,700 to 6.1 million as a result of application of Title V to greenhouse gases, a 400-fold increase. When EPA assumed a mere 40-fold increase in applications – one-tenth of the actual increase – and no increase in employees to process them, the processing time for Title V permits would jump from 6-10 months to ten years. Hiring the 230,000 full-time employees necessary to produce the 1.4 billion work hours required to address the actual increase in permitting functions would result in an increase in Title V administration costs of $21 billion per year. Id. at 31,535-40, 31,577.

PB-in-AL

“…they promised that they would never, never ever do such a thing again…”
Indeed, we don’t need no steenkin’ inspector general’s reports…

gnomish

the upshot is?
are they stopped?
are they delayed?
or is this all just normal foreplay?

I emailed the following to Matt Dempsey at Inhofe’s EPW office last night (which he thanked me for this morning):
[P]lease remember that Steve McIntyre, the whistleblower on Michael Mann’s IPCC hockey stick graph, protested about this in June 2009 at his blog here: http://climateaudit.org/2009/06/23/climate-audit-submission-to-epa/
“…EPA guidelines require that highly influential scientific assessments meet a variety of sensible standards for transparency, data availability and due diligence – policies that [ClimateAudit] readers know not to have been implemented by the IPCC. I discussed these issues in my prior post and have amplified these arguments in my submission which is online…EPA submission 3951.1 …”

DCA

Romm is saying this:
EPA Inspector General: EPA met statutory requirements for rulemaking and generally followed requirements and guidance related to ensuring the quality of the supporting technical information.
http://thinkprogress.org/romm/2011/09/28/330967/inhofe-inspector-general-epa-endangerment-finding/
REPLY: Romm will say anything, to prop up the declining opinion of the EPA – Anthony
REPLY: DCA, Romm is quote-picking. The best solution is to read the report or the synopsis yourself, I’ve linked to them both in the head post. Romm is desperate, it’s sad to watch. — w.

Cliff Huston

Speed, the EPA brief also states:
“Finally, EPA will conduct a five-year study of the administration of the PSD and Title V programs to greenhouse gases which will lead to a Step 4 rulemaking by April 30, 2016. In that rulemaking EPA will address what action can be taken with regard to sources that have the potential to emit greenhouse gases in amounts above the statutory threshold but below the then-existing tailored threshold. Id. at 31,525. Thus, the Tailoring Rule is calculated to move toward eventual full compliance with the statutory threshold, unless, notwithstanding EPA’s significant efforts at further reducing the administrative burdens through streamlining and other actions, impossibility of full administrative implementation persists at that time. 75 Fed. Reg. at 31,517-18, 31,522/1.”

HankH

Mr Lynn says:
September 29, 2011 at 6:41 am
If we are going to have any success reining in the EPA, we must elect a Climate Realist President and a conservative Senate. Unfortunately, so far the only Republican who has taken a strong position against the Alarmists is Rick Perry. I say ‘unfortunately’, because it appears there is less there than meets the eye.

Herman Cain has also taken a strong position against the alarmists. He states “And we know that those scientists who tried to concoct the science to say we had a hockey stick global warming and they were busted because they manipulated the data. No! This manmade global warming is not a crisis.” Listen to this Mark Levin interview. Pay close attention to his comments starting at the 3:20 timeline in the interview.

HankH says:
September 29, 2011 at 9:56 am
Herman Cain has also taken a strong position against the alarmists. He states “And we know that those scientists who tried to concoct the science to say we had a hockey stick global warming and they were busted because they manipulated the data. No! This manmade global warming is not a crisis.” Listen to this Mark Levin interview. Pay close attention to his comments starting at the 3:20 timeline in the interview.

That’s good news! I was not aware that Mr. Cain had offered an opinion on the subject (I did look on his website, but didn’t see anything). I must say, I am finding Herman Cain more and more impressive. Besides being an enormously successful businessman, he’s a mathematician and computer scientist. He’d probably be right at home here on WUWT!
/Mr Lynn

Speed

Cliff Huston,
Let’s walk back a little bit and follow the story. All bolds are added by me.
1. Al Gored quoted one sentence with lots of big scary numbers from a dailycaller.com post. That post also said, “ … the agency is still asking for taxpayers to shoulder the burden of up to 230,000 new bureaucrats — at a cost of $21 billion — to attempt to implement the rules.”
Further along, dailycaller says (again), “The EPA is asking taxpayers to fund up to 230,000 new government workers to process all the extra paperwork, at an estimated cost of $21 billion.
2. I linked to an article at medamatters.org that said, “No, EPA Is Not Hiring 230,000 Workers To Implement Climate Rules.”
3. Then you said, “Speed, please spare us the spin.” And followed that with a quote from dailycaller.com that included the sentence, “And even if EPA manages to convince a court to make an exception, it seems committed to regulating everyone — at the full $21 billion cost — at some point down the road.
4. Your last comment included a quote from the federal register that included the words, “Finally, EPA will conduct a five-year study of the administration of the PSD and Title V programs to greenhouse gases which will lead to a Step 4 rulemaking by April 30, 2016. In that rulemaking EPA will address what action can be taken with regard to sources that have the potential to emit greenhouse gases in amounts above the statutory threshold but below the then-existing tailored threshold.”
There is no current request for 230,000 new bureaucrats or $21 billion to pay them. Note the change from present to future tense. Some people are overly excited about something that might happen in 2016.
Leaving aside the question of whether or not the law is a good one, it seems that the EPA is doing the right thing by determining the resources required for enforcement, letting the lawmakers know what the cost will be and giving them a chance to change the law — something that certainly should have been done before enactment.

Speed,
Don’t be naive. The EPA will just require industry to do what it is “asking”, without any compensation. Result: higher prices for everyone and a less competitive America.

Willis Eschenbach

Man, 45 responses and no comments on my EPA logo … this being an artist is a harder road to fame and fortune than I had thought …
w.

Hey Willis, nice logo!☺

DCA

Willis,
I found this about the 230,000 EPA EMPLOYEES.
http://mediamatters.org/research/201109270014

Willis Eschenbach

Speed says:
September 29, 2011 at 10:50 am

Cliff Huston,
Let’s walk back a little bit and follow the story. All bolds are added by me.
1. Al Gored quoted one sentence with lots of big scary numbers from a dailycaller.com post. That post also said, “ …the agency is still asking for taxpayers to shoulder the burden of up to 230,000 new bureaucrats — at a cost of $21 billion — to attempt to implement the rules.”

As I read the court brief, the EPA is indeed still asking for the 230,000 bureaucrats … they’re just not asking for them right now.
At least that’s how I read their Bureaucratese, which I admit I don’t speak all that well, when they say:

Thus, the Tailoring Rule is calculated to move toward eventual full compliance with the statutory threshold, unless, notwithstanding EPA’s significant efforts at further reducing the administrative burdens through streamlining and other actions, impossibility of full administrative implementation persists at that time.

In translating this, bear in mind that no government agency in history has ever said that it was impossible for them to do something. They just ask for (or demand) more money and more employees to do it.
So yes, Speed, in fact the agency is still asking for a hugely expanded bureaucracy, which they say will be necessary to implement the “full compliance with the statutory threshold” … they just have postponed the implementation so that they can get their nose in the tent.
This is a beautiful situation for a bureaucracy to be in, because it justifies asking for an unlimited amount of money. Their own estimate is that it will take a fleet of EPA cops that at 230,000 people, is somewhere between the size of the US Navy and the US Army … but heck, I’m sure they’d be satisfied with half of that number …
w.

Michael C. Roberts

I work at a facility (in the Air Program, of all places!) with numerous point sources of air emissions (boilers, water heaters, landfills, etc.) that cause this facility to be a major emitter of GHG’s under the new EPA GHG Tailoring Rule. And – we must report our CO2 emissions in “Carbon Equivalents” by close of business TOMORROW, Friday September 30, 2011!!! See the EPA website:
http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/ghgrulemaking.html
We are not being charged emission fees (or fines) for this initial reporting year of 2011 – but I just thought you all would like to see that there are reporting requirements in place – right now – in real time – for those above the emission thresholds.
If you open the EPA website, and root around you will see the convoluted and confusing “GHG Reporting Tool” that we must use to report our 2011 emissions – a Beta test that lends itself to subject matter experts and savvy consultants but is very confusing to even us veteran “Air Heads” (read; Air Program veterans). T guess what I am trying to impart to everyone is that this is not some future issue – IT IS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW.
Michael C. Roberts