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Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Clear Skies

Juan Non-Volokh hasposted about the Clear Skies proposal. Must read for those who are interested in the environment:

The claims that Clear Skies would allow for greater emissions than current law are based upon highly questionable assumptions about the effectiveness of ordering additional rounds of emission reductions under current law through the regulatory process. Compared against any set of realistic assumptions, however, Clear Skies would clearly result in greater emissions reductions. Still, some environmental activists would claim these reductions are not enough, and oppose any legislation that does not include caps on carbon dioxide -- which is not currently regulated under the Clean Air Act at all.
The tendancy of environmentalists to refuse any compromise is, in my opinion, as big of a threat to the environment as any corporate polluter. We need to take measures to safegaurd our environment, but there are many good things in the world and compromise is necessary. I am willing to listen to reasons why Clear Skies is a bad idea. I am willing to look at other measures. When the opponants of Clear Skies seem to be opposed not because it is not good, but because it is not perfect I start to tune them out however. Obviously one of the dangers is that this sort of crying wolf (the arsenic scandal was similar in some ways) debases their ability to draw attention to actual problems.

2 Comments:

Blogger t0m said...

You're wrong about why we oppose the Clear Skies Act. The reductions promised are far less than those which would be achieved simply by enforcing the existing Clean Air Act.

When Duyba says his proposal would reduce mercury emissions by 70%, he means in comparison to his current deriliction of duty to the current law. 70% compared to doing nothing, 70% compared to abrogating the Clean Air Act.

CO2 is another issue, one that earns Bush a place in the flip-flopper hall of fame.

3/09/2005 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Dave Justus said...

Your claims do not match the article Juan linked to, which seems convincing to me. Unless you have better data, I remain unconvinced that Clear Skies would not reduce mercury, sulfer, etc,. by 70%.

It is true that Bush reneged on his campaign promise to regulate CO2. While that may well be a worthy goal (I am unsure of this) the simple fact is that CO2 is not regulated now.

3/09/2005 01:59:00 PM  

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