Court Docs Suggest Repeat of Obama/Copenhagen, Biden EPA Plans to Spring Unprecedented “Back Door” Climate Rule, One Obama’s EPA Chief Called “Not Advisable”, in Glasgow

From Government Accountability & Oversight

Hell Hath Frozen Over: Court Docs Suggest Repeat of Obama/Copenhagen, Biden EPA Plans to Spring Unprecedented “Back Door” Climate Rule, One Obama’s EPA Chief Called “Not Advisable”, in Glasgow

The Biden Administration appears set to subtly affirm in October a “‘Back Door’ Climate Plan” — or the specifics of how it intends to “decarbonize the U.S. economy” in the next decade — if hiding it in a secondary “ozone NAAQS” which the administration will days later unveil, in its pursuit of praise from the global environmental establishment, at a November “climate” conference in Glasgow, Scotland.

Emails with activists and obtained from state attorneys general confirm this end-run, repeating the theatrical trappings of the Obama EPA’s first-year radicalization of the Agency, is employed because the required legislation is simply not feasible and to avoid the political and likely legal suicide of trying to openly and directly regulate greenhouse gases (GHGs) as “criteria pollutants” (i.e., setting a “primary NAAQS” for carbon dioxide or ‘GHG equivalent’).

That the breathtaking move is in fact on its way was hinted at in a court filing by EPA in the DC Circuit on Thursday. A letter sent the same day to the White House by Congressional Republicans helps make the connection between this plan and the upcoming climate conference. A review of the history of the Obama-Biden EPA and White House makes the connection, and cynical orchestration to obtain international approval, irresistible.

Obama’s EPA orchestrated its radical revamping of EPA and global warming agenda to coincide with its arrival at a “climate” conference in Copenhagen


Think Green New Deal and “Net Zero.” Actually, Net Less-Than-Zero, without ever being granted permission to “decarbonize” the economy by Congress. The radical move, rejected even by the Obama EPA and dismissed by green activists at the time (“hell will freeze over before there’s a NAAQS for CO2”), suddenly transforms the Clean Air Act into the economic policy weapon the environmental left has long sought.

This development also appears to lie behind the mystery promise the Biden White House made to the world and is set to at long last add some detail to at the annual Conference of the Parties to the series of climate treaties including Kyoto Protocol and Paris agreement, being held this year in Glasgow“COP26” beginning on November 1. Republican Senators have been demanding detail for the radical vow of a 50-plus percent reduction in GHGs by 2030, a demand they repeated in a new letter to the White House, sent on Thursday.

Also by chance on Thursday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency filed a Motion For Abeyance And Extension To Motion To Govern Deadline in the DC Circuit, seeking yet another extension of time to tell the court what it intends to do about State of New York et al. v. EPA. That challenge by a handful of progressive governors and NYC is the apparent sue-and-settle attempt that was the subject of the WS Journal’s March 18 editorial, “Biden’s ‘Back Door’ Climate Plan”.

That editorial summarized an amicus brief filed on behalf of Energy Policy Advocates in the same matter explaining how the AGs, Obama EPA alums and, most critically, now-Biden EPA Air chief Joe Goffman — called “’EPA’s Law Whisperer’ because ‘his specialty is teaching old laws to do new tricks’”— planned this before Goffman went in-house:

President Biden wants Congress to pass climate legislation, but that faces political obstacles. No worries—state Democratic Attorneys General are conspiring with green groups on a regulatory Plan B. … Consultants referred by Mr. Goffman told the AGs that regulating CO2 as a criteria pollutant wouldn’t fly. But they proposed using ozone NAAQS as what one called a “backdoor.” Fossil fuel combustion, motor vehicle exhaust and industrial emissions contribute to ozone. So the EPA could make states reduce CO2 emissions by tightening ozone standards. States might have to outlaw natural gas-powered appliances, gas stations and internal combustion engines to meet stricter ozone standards.…To sum up, Democratic AGs, green groups and a top Biden environmental regulator are colluding on a plan to impose the Green New Deal on states through a back regulatory door because they know they can’t pass it through the front in Congress.

That brief led to the following. First, the story about the amicus brief:

Then EPA showed a little ankle and:

Then, after a couple other moves, the jig looked like it might be up, and the amicus brief was right.

The Biden White House and EPA have been kicking the day down the road when it has to say in NY v. EPA whether it is going to reconsider the Trump EPA’s decision to leave the ozone NAAQS unchanged, or do what the AGs want — again, on which they consulted with Mr. Goffman before he came in-house to oversee the office in charge. Incidentally, Goffman’s ethics records obtained by Energy Policy Advocates show no indication he disclosed this during the ethics process. Had he even provided, as public records suggest did, pro bono consultation to the AGs on this particular matter, not only should it have been disclosed but he should be recused from any involvement in, e.g., EPA’s resolution of this issue. There are no indications he has recused, either.

As Energy Policy Advocates informed the Court this Spring, when revealing what was going on here:

When Petitioner Attorneys General and the Respondent’s official presently responsible for the NAAQS programs, including the Rule at issue, Joe Goffman, first consulted about how to force greenhouse gas regulations through the CAA’s NAAQS program in late 2019, the AGs were exploring regulating CO2 as a criteria pollutant, thereby triggering a CO2 or GHG-equivalent NAAQS. That proposition has long been understood to carry considerable risk. [FN3: A climate NAAQS, whether or not obscured within a “secondary ozone NAAQS”, would require massive central regulation of nearly all aspects of economic life, essentially a perpetual “Lockdown Economy”, requiring truly massive reductions in energy use emissions.] President Obama’s first EPA Administrator, Lisa Jackson, rejected a climate NAAQS as not “advisable.” One prominent environmentalist group attorney, also seeking to quell controversy over the prospect early in the Obama administration, said “hell will freeze over before there’s a NAAQS for CO2.”

EPA’s delays have come on the 9th of most months since the AGs filed suit the day before Inauguration Day, ensuring only the Biden EPA could answer the lawsuit (Hey Siri, what’s “sue and settle”?). The Agency’s most recent filing was to counter the five AGs (TX, MS, AR, MO, LA) who filed, also Thursday, asking the court to say enough is enough and order EPA to explain what it’s up to already.

Those AGs had already told the court, when seeking to intervene, that signs were this delay over responding to a friendly suit over an ozone rule actually had something to do with the Biden climate agenda, and that EPA could not be trusted to defend its own rule. In so connecting the suit to a desired and radical settlement toward turning ozone regulation into a new and never authorized “climate regulatory regime, the AGs’ brief slaps down any dismissive talking point that “well the Biden EPA would have reviewed this rule anyway” and suggests, if less expressly than Energy Policy Advocates’ amicus brief, that there was a sue-n-settle brewing here.

In response, EPA at long last said on Thursday, gee we just need until…October 29.

Friday, October 29 struck us as odd. But a quick check confirmed that the Paris-agreement-“COP26” in Glasgow, begins Monday, November 1. Ah.

As the Republican lawmakers wrote in their letter (emphases added).

We write to reiterate our requests that your Administration disclose the details, analyses, and calculations used or generated to support the nationally determined contribution (NDC) target as part of the pledge to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions by 50 to 52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. 1 In a document submitted to the United Nations under the Paris Agreement, the Administration stated that it had “conducted a detailed analysis to underpin this 2030 target, reviewing a range of pathways for each sector of the economy that produces CO2 and non-CO2 greenhouse gases: electricity, transportation, buildings, industry, and the land sector.”2…The 1ack of accountability and transparency to date is even more concerning as the NDC target and regulatory actions to meet this target will be the focus at the upcoming 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow.

Those old enough to remember the first year of the Obama administration will have spotted the play, or rather the re-play, here.

Knowing this “The timing is coincidence” crowd’s history of stagecraft on these matters — most particularly, timing the Endangerment Finding so Lisa Jackson could land in Copenhagen (COP15) as a conquering hero, waving a paper ensuring Greenpeace in Our Time, we at GAO submit that history is repeating itself here. The Biden EPA not only seeks to hide its “not advisable”, and likely tainted-by-conflict “Climate NAAQS” in a “secondary ozone NAAQS” standard, and obscure the machinations domestically within the ritual orgiastic coverage of the annual “COP”… while enthralling the one audience this orchestration is intended to titillate, the COP attendees.

Expect EPA to tell the DC Circuit on October 29 that it has decided to revisit the Trump ozone standard, and the Biden team to reveal at one level of detail or another in Glasgow a few days later that an Ozone NAAQS is the principal regulatory vehicle to obtain the massive promise of economic self-harm never authorized by Congress, to meet promises made in a treaty never sent to or approved by the Senate, and to appease parties who do not have the U.S.’s interests at heart.

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Andrew Wilkins
September 16, 2021 10:10 am

The info in this article is interesting and worth knowing, but scans poorly. Some editing is needed, methinks.

Michael in Dublin
Reply to  Andrew Wilkins
September 16, 2021 12:19 pm

Methinks you must be an eejit because your rambling has absolutely nothing to do with either Andrew Wilkins’ comment or to the article above.

Please editor block this person!

Reply to  Andrew Wilkins
September 16, 2021 1:27 pm

Their brains need a major editing. Warming alarmists are delusional – or just plain lying.

Earth is now cooling due to low solar activity, just as we predicted in 2002.

September 16, 2021 Cap Allon
Once upon a time, NASA said low solar activity = global cooling. The exact same pattern is unfolding again NOW, but with one key difference — the modern scientific establishment is tasked with peddling the AGW narrative, meaning reality and historical documentation must be twisted, obfuscated, and flat-out ignored.

September 16, 2021 10:26 am

Reading this post took me on a syntax journey. (The sentence structure made me think English was not the original language the writer’s mind used when thinking.) Or, maybe I was having myself a protracted “senior moment”. This is not a criticism of the author’s message, nor details presented.

Crispin Pemberton-Pigott
Reply to  gringojay
September 18, 2021 6:13 am

All syntax is correct in the sense of acceptable. The author may once have been a UK football commentator!

Ron Long
September 16, 2021 10:26 am

Elitist Arrogance on full display. I wonder who is doing the actual protection work of the EPA while they are diverted into this nonsense?

Reply to  Ron Long
September 16, 2021 10:55 am

“I wonder who is doing the actual protection work of the EPA”

The EPA has not actually done anything to protect the environment in any meaningful way since the 1970s. They have not done anything useful at all for decades.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  TonyL
September 16, 2021 12:17 pm

They did the first large meta-study on second hand smoke which was immediately shown to be worthless and without merit. It showed a relative risk lower than 1 to 1.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
September 16, 2021 1:46 pm

I remember those days very well. Study after study. They all showed the same thing.
The fly in the ointment:
They defined “second hand smoke” in such a way, with “exposure” in such a way, that said exposure was “such and such” dangerous.

People dug into the statistical data these research studies provided and calculated the risks. Turned out that “second hand smoke” was *more* dangerous than smoking. Going further, if you were exposed to “second hand smoke”, you could reduce your risk by *taking up smoking*, as per the stats in these studies. (Obviously, at this point, the studies were pure ideological garbage)

The EPA did *not* like it. But they kept up putting out these bogus studies, one after the other. Eventually the people publishing the rebuttals to these studies got tired of refuting the same BS over and over again. After a few more years, the EPA had several studies that went unchallenged and the jihad against “second hand smoke” began in earnest.

The fallout:
A generation of doctors were taught in medical school that childhood asthma was caused by second hand smoke. Over time, one researcher was not so sure. He thought, maybe, childhood asthma was linked somehow to allergies, but he was not sure. He published in a major medical journal ~1999.

The dean of the Harvard Medical School went BERSERK.
He wrote an editorial in one of the major medical journals pointing out that most childhood asthma is a direct result of allergies, or is made worse by allergies. And this has been known since forever. Then he asked “What the hell are they teaching in medical school, anyway?” He finished up by stating that any pediatrician who is *not* checking asthma patients for allergies and treating appropriately is guilty of egregious medical malpractice.
And as Dean of Harvard Medical, he personally would see to it that all such pediatricians would have their license to practice medicine permanently revoked.

All Hell broke loose in the medical community.
The upshot was that “second hand smoke”, sunk like a rock, disappeared without a trace, and was never heard from again. But not before much damage was done. Children across the country had gone years with allergies which went untreated, or worse, were mistreated. Many were made very ill with lifelong damage. Some died. All this from an ideological crusade by the EPA.

Reply to  TonyL
September 16, 2021 1:52 pm

And who was ever held accountable?

There’s those crickets again . . .

Rory Forbes
Reply to  TonyL
September 16, 2021 6:09 pm

Further on asthma, the WHO basically duplicated the EPA’s method as well as using most of the same collection of studies in the meta-analysis resulting in almost the same relative risk (WHO 1:35 vs. EPA 1:25). Bottled milk had a greater cancer risk than SHS. In that “study” there was a positive correlation between childhood asthma and both parents smoking. Of course that finding was quickly memory holed. Government controlled science has been selling us shit for years. Now people just believe anything they’re told.

The bogus “studies” had the desired results, virtually ending all public smoking. What was even more amusing was the large number of equally bogus supporting “studies”. The process mirrors the equally bogus science providing support to the AGW industry.

Reply to  TonyL
September 17, 2021 10:54 am

It’s “protection” as in “protection racket” – think of it that way and it makes more sense.

Reply to  Ron Long
September 16, 2021 12:11 pm

Leftists always know what is best for everyone, and they will use any trick they can come up with to force the rest of the world to live up to their standards. (Interestingly enough, liberals never seem to live up to their own standards when given the chance.)

September 16, 2021 10:31 am

Damn Richard Nixon for establishing EPA as a stand-alone agency, thus leading to the “special prosecutor” syndrome, where the issue is never considered settled.

Reply to  Tom Halla
September 16, 2021 11:37 am

Yes, a dual-use agency. A double-edged scalpel that can be wielded with transadministrative flourish. The military, IRS, DOE (education), too.

Reply to  n.n
September 17, 2021 3:56 pm

The unexpected costs of continuity. One could add SCOTUS to the list.
However in that case SCOTUS is essentially for life, but agency jobs (not appointments) are also for life, hence the Deep State.
It exists in every “democracy”.

September 16, 2021 10:51 am

There is no lack of useful idiots supporting Marxist ideology by feeding their ego with ‘holier than thou’ and ‘save the world’ attitudes.

Robert of Texas
September 16, 2021 11:15 am

Elect people to Congress who will agree to disband the EPA (or just defund it). We need to start taking our democracy back from these liberal-idiots.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Robert of Texas
September 16, 2021 11:46 am

Please add CDC and NIH to this list, they are effectively murdering US citizens.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
September 16, 2021 12:21 pm

I’d also suggest that the Dept. of Education needs some work too. Frankly, I believe it’s mostly a redundant agency, costing billions, that serves to inflate the cost of education and little else.

September 16, 2021 11:19 am

The USA administration today reminds me of the opening scenes in “Casino” where Joe Pesci’s character Nicky Santoro narrates to his dismay how they had such a good thing going, “but we had to go and fvck it all up”.

This I fear will the refrain of future generations of Americans.

Carbon Bigfoot
Reply to  Mr.
September 16, 2021 12:25 pm

Time to do some intellectual bullying.

September 16, 2021 11:22 am

These people are relentless. Typical leftist playbook stuff. The elites don’t care about the damage they do, because they’re insulated from the damage they cause. For the rest of us: BOHICA.

CD in Wisconsin
September 16, 2021 11:46 am

“The Biden Administration appears set to subtly affirm in October a “‘Back Door’ Climate Plan” — or the specifics of how it intends to “decarbonize the U.S. economy” in the next decade — if hiding it in a secondary “ozone NAAQS” which the administration will days later unveil, in its pursuit of praise from the global environmental establishment, at a November “climate” conference in Glasgow, Scotland.”


The feet of the EPA, Biden Administration and the environmental movement need to be put to the fire. Bring the fossil fuel demonization and climate scare narratives to a head.

The fossil-fuel power plant and oil refinery companies should draw up a plan or schedule to gradually shut down their power plants and oil refineries between now and 2030 to comply with this “Back Door Climate Plan” and the demand for CO2 reductions. Submit it to the EPA and Biden Administration with the explanation for it. The companies will need to send letters to all their customers informing when their electrical service (or fuel supplies) will be terminated and why. Suggest to electrical customers that they put solar panels on their roofs beforehand.

Realizing what the public’s response will be and what will happen to the economy if this plan actually were to be invoked, it would be interesting to see how the Biden Administration, the environmental movement and the Left would respond.

I realize this will likely never happen since no one in any of the oil or power plant companies have the intestinal fortitude to actually go down this road, not to mention their responsibility to their stockholders as well. Being compliant little sheeple is all they can do. But it is interesting nonetheless to suggest and think about this and wonder what would transpire as a result of it.

Robert Hanson
Reply to  CD in Wisconsin
September 18, 2021 5:32 pm

If I understand this article correctly, there is no need for FF companies to do that. Apparently the Biden Administration is intending to use the EPA to force them to do exactly what CD proposed. Hopefully this nefarious plan will be foiled, otherwise…..

Thomas Gasloli
September 16, 2021 12:03 pm

This is why the Trump administration should have withdrawn the Greenhouse Gas Finding of Endangerment. They had 4 years to put a stake in the heart of this but failed. They GOP always fails to use its opportunities to stop the left.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Thomas Gasloli
September 16, 2021 12:38 pm

Any GOP president must tread carefully because of the often hidden presence of RINOS in the party. If they are too often thwarted from their “do nothing” approach to government, they’ll come back and show themselves during critical votes. The 50 – 50 split in the Senate is one example.

Reply to  Thomas Gasloli
September 16, 2021 1:10 pm

At a more global level, my many many years of business failures and successes tell me that the key to instilling a rational approach in people when it comes to agw is BASIC MARKETING PRINCIPLES.

Remember that widespread surveys of ordinary peoples’ concerns over global warming / climate change rate it very much lower than their basic concerns for living conditions – health, income, home, electricity, food, transport, fuel, etc. etc.

And basic sales / marketing principles dictate that you never disparage your competitors’ ‘products’ as a core plank of your pitch to get a sale.
Focus your pitch instead on the things that your prospects fear loss of, ​​value, gain financially from, desire to acquire, covet in others.

So when it comes to convincing peeps about the undesirability of “fighting climate change”, pitch to their personal priorities for a better life for them and theirs.

In other words, highlight why their elected representatives should be concentrating not on spending $trillions on “fighting the weather”, but rather on health, transport, housing, electricity, affordable fuels, employment, pensions, education, recreation, etc. etc. that are the main things people want to assure the good lives that politicians are continually promising them.

Stop p1ssing away my tax $$$s on your useless “feel-good” vanity projects that benefit only your manipulating cronies in the UN and other elite lobbyist groups and their lawyers.

Then, the biggest (and most costly element of a sales / marketing campaign) – getting the pitch out there to the masses.

Remember – Bill Gates managed to do it with a 2nd rate product, and is still doing it . . .

September 16, 2021 12:19 pm
September 16, 2021 1:04 pm

So, where is the democratic will of the people?

Big decisions demand a plebiscite

Every Western government is denying its citizenry any say on their future

Peta of Newark
September 16, 2021 1:17 pm

Where does their fixation with Ozone come from?
Yes it’s horrible stuff but instinctively, and after a Google search, I cannot see it coming from the combustion of Fossil Fuel.

Yeeesss, if you burn hot enough you will get Nitrogen Oxides but quickly fall apart of their own volition and or dissolve into water and fall out of the sky
(It helps with Global Greening as it happens)

is that what they’re doing, confusing aerosols of Nitric Acid with Ozone?
Certainly yes, both those things would have horrible nasty effect on any living thing they touched, but but but, photochemical smog is not = Ozone

The Oxide of Nitrogen that doesn’t dissolve in water (laughing gas) is very flammable and if it did anything, would react with any Ozone there was around and mutually destroy each other

The only significant source of Ozone is the UV from the Sun reacting with normal diatomic Oxygen.
Or electrical (corona) discharge from high voltage power lines and of course, lightning.

Those sources of Ozone do happen near the ground and is why, basically, plants ‘smell’
They produce and release Volatile Organic Compounds in order to shoot down the solar-generated Ozone before it hurts them.

Escaped methane, petrol, propane or any similar would do the same but they are bad guys too.

What happened to science….where & when did it fall off the tracks?

Reply to  Peta of Newark
September 16, 2021 2:57 pm

The Appalachian forests would have to be pelletized and sent to the UK to cut down the Ozone they produce.

old engineer
Reply to  Peta of Newark
September 16, 2021 9:55 pm

Okay. It’s been over 30 years since I was involved with atmospheric ozone, so I don’t guarantee that I remember this stuff correctly. But here goes-

Ground level ozone (and other reactive hydrocarbons that are lumped in with ozone) are formed when NO2 and hydrocarbons (like unburned or partially burned gasoline) are exposed to sunlight. This is why ozone in urban areas peaks in the afternoon. Vehicle exhaust from the morning rush results in atmospheric NO2 and hydrocarbons that “cook” in the sunlight for several hours to produce ozone and some other nasty reactive hydrocarbons.

Modern 3-way catalyst systems severely limit the amount of NO(which quickly turns to NO2 in sunlight) and hydrocarbons coming out of a vehicle tailpipe.

Incidentally, the ozone NAAQS is currently below what was considered background 50 years ago.

Gregory Woods
September 16, 2021 1:27 pm

Traitor Joe at work, again…

Gregory Woods
September 16, 2021 1:30 pm

So Much To Screw Up, And So Little Time To Do It In

September 16, 2021 2:08 pm

The backdoor… back hole… black hole…. black whore h/t NAACP.

September 16, 2021 2:44 pm

Climate change provides cover for corruption and misconduct…..

The World Bank canceled a prominent report rating the business environment of the world’s countries after an investigation concluded that senior bank management pressured staff to alter data affecting the ranking of China and other nations.
The leaders implicated include then World Bank Chief Executive Kristalina Georgieva, now managing director of the International Monetary Fund, and then World Bank President Jim Yong Kim.
The episode is a reputational hit for Ms. Georgieva, who disagreed with the investigators’ conclusions. As leader of the IMF, the lender of last resort to struggling countries around the world, she is in part responsible for managing political pressure from nations seeking to advance their own interests. It was also the latest example of the Chinese government seeking myriad ways to burnish its global standing.

Bill Everett
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 17, 2021 7:33 am

If all of this anti-CO2 activity results in severe curtailment of “human induced CO2” there is going to be quite a shock when the global CO2 rise continues unabated. Maybe then there will be a better analysis of the data from the CO2 measuring OCO-2 or its replacement and the realization that the warming of the Earth is causing the CO2 rise rather than the CO2 rise causing the warming of the Earth.

Reply to  Bill Everett
September 17, 2021 11:29 am

“Maybe then there will be a better analysis of the data”

More likely there will be even more shrill screaming about how “we need to do MORE”

September 17, 2021 5:28 am

I’d love to read this article but it hops around so much because of the enormous amounts of flashing ads I can’t find where I was reading because of all the interference. Too bad who ever put this article together believes that ads are more important than content

Leonard E Herr
September 17, 2021 7:29 am

The NAAQS, or more specifically nonattainment determinations by EPA, are and have been being used as a “backdoor” to extreme government regulation of business and private behavior for years. Once you set the NAAQS to an unachievable level using their secret science you set the stage for dominate government control of the economy by unelected bureaucrats. No need for the legislative process at that point, just rule by government dictate. For the public health of course!

Now where else have I heard that excuse used recently?

September 17, 2021 10:13 am

Why don’t we get it over with and just ban oil completely?

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