Planet Gore

Texas vs. the EPA

Texas governor Rick Perry is suing the federal government [PDF], challenging the EPA’s CO2 endangerment finding. From the governor’s press release:

The state’s legal action indicates EPA’s Endangerment Finding is legally unsupported because the agency outsourced its scientific assessment to the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which has been discredited by evidence of key scientists’ lack of objectivity, coordinated efforts to hide flaws in their research, attempts to keep contravening evidence out of IPCC reports and violation of freedom of information laws. . . .

“With billions of dollars at stake, EPA outsourced the scientific basis for its greenhouse gas regulation to a scandal-plagued international organization that cannot be considered objective or trustworthy,” Attorney General Abbott said. “Prominent climate scientists associated with the IPCC were engaged in an ongoing, orchestrated effort to violate freedom of information laws, exclude scientific research, and manipulate temperature data. In light of the parade of controversies and improper conduct that has been uncovered, we know that the IPCC cannot be relied upon for objective, unbiased science – so EPA should not rely upon it to reach a decision that will hurt small businesses, farmers, ranchers, and the larger Texas economy.”

As noted in comments to the EPA filed by Gov. Perry last year, the agency’s decision to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act will impose a tremendous regulatory and financial burden on farmers and ranchers, small businesses, and an energy sector that hundreds of thousands of Texans depend upon for their jobs — not to mention Texas families who face an estimated $1,200 in increased annual living costs during a down economy.

Texas’ agriculture industry, which accounts for $106 billion — or approximately 9.5 percent of Texas’ total gross state product — would be disproportionately damaged by the proposed regulations. Fully 80 percent of the land in Texas is used in some form of agricultural production. Additionally, 97 percent of Texas’ agricultural operations are run by individuals or families, and one out of seven working Texans is employed in some form of agriculture.

“EPA’s move to regulate greenhouse gases would impose devastating rules on those Texans who fuel one of our state’s largest economic sectors — farmers and ranchers,” Commissioner Staples said. “As a regulatory agency, the Texas Department of Agriculture is required to impose rules based on sound science — not political science. Not only does state law require this, but it is also a fundamental principle by which regulators all across the U.S. have always lived. EPA has ignored extensive research on greenhouse gas emissions and based this significant regulation on faulty data.”  

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