Friday, April 16, 2010

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli kicks EPA lawsuit up a notch

Ken Cuccinelli at Roanoke Chamber of Commerce earlier

RICHMOND, VA (April 16, 2010) — Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli, II, on behalf of the Commonwealth of Virginia, filed a motion Thursday to attempt to compel the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to open hearings so that evidence can be presented that may show the data the agency relied on to enact carbon dioxide regulations is faulty.

Cuccinelli keeps his promise to challenge an overreaching government – videos  – His threat was in the works last Tuesday, April 6 while having coffee with the Roanoke Chamber of Commerce when he said:

ROANOKE, VA  (April 6, 2010) — Concerning environmental issues, Cuccinelli explained that Virginia, along with 13 other states, is suing the Environmental Protection Agency to “essentially redo the science.” He defined redo – “As if they did any science.” As an engineer he has very strong views on “what they did or rather what they didn’t do. The implications on jobs and cost of goods sold are enormous,” he concluded.

Cuccinelli called it an “accelerated version of cap and trade.” There’s no demonstrable gain to be had in environmental improvement.

He has petitioned the EPA to reopen the process denoting proof of “new information.” “Not answering is a common practice by the EPA,” observed Cuccinelli. He is now filing a notice of appeal as he took the newly released rules as a rejection of his petition.

This motion is part of the existing lawsuit Virginia has against the EPA over its finding that carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere is a danger to public health and welfare. Mr. Cuccinelli filed the motion jointly with the State of Alabama in the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

In February, Mr. Cuccinelli filed a motion with the EPA, asking the agency to reopen its hearings to consider new climate change data in light of the recent Climate-gate scandal, since the scandal broke after the agency closed its hearings on “greenhouse gas” regulation in August 2009.

Earlier this month, the EPA seemed to indicate that it does not intend to reopen hearings when it announced its intention to issue new emissions standards on cars and light duty trucks based on the same discredited data. As a result, the attorney general is now asking the court to compel the EPA to reopen hearings to allow for the full development of an accurate record.

In the wake of the Climate-gate scandal, where emails were leaked from the Climate Research Unit at East Anglia in Great Britain, several of the world’s prominent climatologists admitted that they manipulated data to overstate the effects of carbon dioxide emissions on the environment. Based on the EPA’s initial hearings and on the faulty global warming data on which it relied, the agency concluded that carbon dioxide and other “greenhouse gases” are dangerous pollutants. The endangerment finding allows the EPA to strictly regulate carbon dioxide and these other gases. 

The EPA’s regulation of carbon dioxide could end up costing businesses and every Virginian household hundreds of millions of dollars in potentially unnecessary fees and increased energy costs, and could price industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, energy, and others out of business, destroying the jobs they provide to Virginians. Costs to Virginia households to heat homes, buy groceries, and power appliances are projected to increase by thousands of dollars a year under the likely regulations.

“Whatever the final decision is by the EPA, we want it to be based on sound scientific data, not data that has been sifted through a political filter,” said Mr. Cuccinelli.

The motion was filed Thursday because that was the deadline to do so. Section 307 of the Clean Air Act permits the court to remand when it is clear that newly available evidence should be considered by the agency. To proceed only on the evidence currently in the record could be a waste of time and resources, given the likelihood that an appeal of the suit would prevail, and the new evidence would likely be included eventually.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Politics, State Politics

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