The fact that a 300-page amendment to the cap-and-trade energy bill was added at 3am on the morning of the vote, shows that 1) there’s a lot of information to go through when regulating CO2 and energy 2) some politicians want quick, impulsive votes and 3) they will use sneaky tactics to get their legislation passed. I would like to ask how many of the 435 Representatives read all 300 pages of the amendment, much less the original bill itself. Admittedly, I have not read the entire bill either, only excerpts as well as analysis from political commentators and news agencies. But it is not the content itself that I’m concerned with, it is what the content is based on that matters most.
What troubles me is that a scientific/economic report by EPA analyst Alan Carlin urging for more research was ignored by the EPA. You see, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued it’s findings in the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) back in 2005, and it is this document upon which the energy bill and the EPA’s support was based. Carlin’s report debated many of the findings of the AR4. However, he was silenced and asked not to speak of his findings. (Click here.)
Also, the AR4 was released in 2005. According to an internet search of articles related to ‘general circulation model’ (which is what computer models that project global warming are called), almost half a million documents have been released since the IPCC report. Thats half a million pieces of information related to climate change that the IPCC was not privy to when it came out with the AR4. So that means the billed that passed the House is going off of climate data from 4 years ago. Technologies and science rapidly advance as we learn better and more accurate ways to accumulate and process data. Shouldn’t such a large overhauling of our environmental policies and regulations receive as much information as is available? According to the IPCC website, the AR5 is currently in the outlining stage and will not be released till 2014. So if Congress just can’t wait 5 more years, then at least use data from the past 5 years to construct a more timely and informative piece of legislation.
Did the Congress rush to judgment on a issue which is hotly debated and still up for interpretation? Yes. Did they do so for the country’s benefit or their own? Only time will tell.
Thank you to Thomas Fuller and Examiner.com for covering this developing story in much more detail.