The EPA goes on crusade (carefully)

So the EPA is gearing up to try and figure out how to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act (or Klinneract, if you're a fan of the new weird) - which, in practice, means carbon dioxide, since that's the big one that hasn't truly been labeled as a pollutant.

As this New York Times article points out, it's gonna be a hard fight.

Specifically, trying to declare CO2 as a pollutant - or, more accurately, trying to declare excessive anthropogenic sources of CO2 as polluting - has so far been an uphill battle. The GWBush blocked it pretty outright, and a very popular talking point on the internet is that CO2 is not a pollutant, but rather Life itself (for plants).

Yet, the IPCC - which, let's recall, is endorsed by all world governments (or almost all - I need to check this) - has made the point that it's primarily CO2 that's driving this world towards a harmful climate change, and that the bulk of that change is being driven by humanity.

So, yeah.

It shouldn't be too hard to figure out where I stand on this issue, and of course there are going to be problems - but I can't help but feel a little worried about the regulatory path. Of course we need regulation, but if it's done the wrong way around, it might just hurt the effort by making people bitter and provoking illegal behavior. Prohibition seems like a strange example, but it (and a thousand other examples) do illustrate that people will go to great lengths for profit, and in the past that's been falsifying scientific or technical information.

So... yeah.

Please try, EPA - but please understand that you can't do it alone. And you shouldn't. And, hopefully - you won't.

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