Not Enough “Green” to be Green?

The Washington Post has details about the budget proposal.  Here’s the information on EPA:

President Obama’s proposed budget provides $9 billion for the Environmental Protection Agency, noting that that amount represents a $1.3 billion decrease from the previous budget year. But that’s unlikely to satisfy Republicans in the House who are sharpening their knives to cut even more from an agency that plans to pressure big polluters to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The EPA vowed to restore air and water quality with strict new rules, earning praise from liberal groups but making enemies of manufacturers and their politically conservative supporters who say the rules will add to business costs and eliminate jobs. The administration backpedaled slightly on funding the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, cutting its budget by $125 million.

In terms of climate change,

There are a few million dollars in the Agriculture Department budget for climate research, a nod toward climate science in the Commerce Department, money for promoting electric vehicles and more efficient buildings in the Energy Department budget, and $73 million in the Interior budget to permit renewable energy projects on federal land.

Of course, auctioning allowances would bring in federal revenue, but the GOP’s interest in deficit reduction doesn’t encompass such measures.

The budget still promises extensive investment in renewables at DOE:

[The proposed budget] would provide some new money for energy research, including three new “hubs” for battery and electric grid research, and increases in budget authority for promoting renewable-power projects.

In pursuit of boosting the number of electric cars on the road, Obama proposes $588 million, an 88 percent increase, for helping communities that invest in electric-vehicle infrastructure. He would also alter the $7,500 tax credit for buyers of electric vehicles, making it a tax rebate available immediately at the point of sale.

The only thing we can say for sure about the final budget that emerges from Congress is that it will be lower and will to the extent politically possible further the GOP’s deregulatory agenda.

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Reader Comments

6 Replies to “Not Enough “Green” to be Green?”

  1. “…The EPA vowed to restore air and water quality with strict new rules,…”

    This is another example of false and misleading political acts by the EPA. Since the beginning of the modern environmental movement in the 1960’s there has been a long term trend of improving air and water quality, habitat protection, hazardous waste remediation, and many other environmental improvements in America. The EPA’s assertion of environmental degredation under Republican administrations is not supported by facts and evidence. This is a blatantly false assertion that is meant for political defamation only, and does not convey the truth. This the face of today’s EPA.

  2. @bqrq: if you look at the context (both shown here and at the linked source), that statement seems to refer to long-term restoration, noting Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes, which are long-term restoration projects. There are no references in the linked article or the budget request to restoring something lost in the eight years prior. The EPA’s statutory instructions are to restore air quality to “attainment” levels, which despite decades of efforts, many areas of the country have not reached. Based on this, I don’t think this is a statement about restoring any quality lost during the Bush Administration, but rather about restoring environmental quality to the better quality we experienced well before the 1960s.

    Regardless, bqrq is incorrect at least with regard to ground-level ozone, see http://www.epa.gov/airtrends/ozone.html There’s a small increase under George W. Bush, and a much larger increase under Ronald Reagan.

  3. “… bqrq is incorrect at least with regard to ground-level ozone,…”

    The great ozone scare is yet another example of EPA spreading false and misleading infromation to inflame a fake environmental problem. The EPA claims that thousands of people have died from exposure to elevated levels of atmospheric ozone. Yet, the EPA has never produced the names, death certificates, autopsy reports, and medical records of these individuals to support its outrageous claims. Instead the EPA uses a statistical construction called “premature deaths” and equates this to actual human deaths. This is how EPA distorts the truth and exaggerates environmental harm. Such practices have become so common that most American do not believe any information issued by the EPA.

  4. “The only thing we can say for sure about the final budget that emerges from Congress is that it will be lower and will to the extent politically possible further the GOP’s deregulatory agenda.”

    We can also be sure that bqrq will claim that it proves anthropogenic global warming is a hoax.

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Dan Farber

Dan Farber has written and taught on environmental and constitutional law as well as about contracts, jurisprudence and legislation. Currently at Berkeley Law, he has al…

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