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. US Pollution Cop Defends Bush Greenhouse Gas Record

"In 2005, EPA's voluntary partnerships prevented over 85 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to the annual emissions from over 57 million vehicles -- three times the number of cars in the state of California," the statement from the US EPA said.
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) April 3, 2007
The US Environmental Protection Agency defended itself Tuesday after the US Supreme Court ordered it to consider greenhouse gases as pollutants.

The US high court handed President George W. Bush a defeat on Monday, when it told the US pollution regulator it was wrong to claim it had no jurisdiction over emissions such as carbon dioxide, which scientists say cause global warming.

With its decision, the Supreme Court also handed a victory to several US states, cities and environmental groups who brought the suit.

"EPA is reviewing the court's decision to determine the appropriate course of action," the agency said in a statement.

"The Bush administration has an unparalleled financial, international and domestic commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions," said the agency, repeating a Bush administration justification for not adhering to the Kyoto protocol on greenhouse gas emissions.

"The Bush administration has spent over 35 billion dollars on climate-change programs -- more than any other country in the world.

"The Bush administration's climate change programs are on target to meet the president's goal to reduce greenhouse gas intensity 18 percent by 2012," said the statement, which pointed out the Bush administration alternative to Kyoto is voluntary.

"In 2005, EPA's voluntary partnerships prevented over 85 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to the annual emissions from over 57 million vehicles -- three times the number of cars in the state of California," the statement said.

Bush withdrew from his predecessor's commitment to Kyoto, arguing that the agreement would jeopardize the US economy and that some developing economies, such as China and India, were exempt from the Kyoto protocol signed by Bill Clinton but not ratified.

Since then, leaders in the electrical power generation industry have approached Bush to ask what limits on carbon emissions should be.

Carbon dioxide and methane are two of the most plentiful greenhouse gases, so called because they gather in Earth's upper atmosphere and, while they allow the sun's rays in, do not allow their heat out, acting much like the glass in a greenhouse.

While this greenhouse effect is necessary for life on the planet, Earth's temperature has been rising steadily since the industrial revolution and has already begun to melt polar ice caps and change weather.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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Trans Atlantic Rift Not That Great On Global Warming
Brussels (AFP) April 4, 2007
The gap between the United States and European Union over how to tackle global warming is narrower than many might think, the US ambassador to the EU said on Tuesday.

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