We have a new chapter to add to the EPA vs. state regulations soap opera. EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson has finally given a reason why the EPA is anti-state rules. Basically, Johnson says the EPS does not see enough proof of increased climate change in California compared to the rest of the nation to justify separate rules. Still, he admits that EPA's authorization of separate pollution rules in the '60s and '70s were justified because air quality was considerably worse in California than in the rest of the U.S. You can read more of Johnson's statement after the jump
Reactions have been, to say the least, intense. For instance, California Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown dismissed Johnson's arguments as "obfuscating, sabotaging . . . specious, ill-founded. . . . We're going to fight him until he's sent packing by the next president." Environmentalists said that 18 states have either adopted the California rules or announced their intentions to do so, and the resulting curbs on greenhouse gas emissions would have beneficial effects across the nation (and the world). S. William Becker, executive director of the National Assn. of Clean Air Agencies said the EPA position was "a shameful attack on states' rights."

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Excerpted statement by EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson:

While I find that the conditions related to global climate change in California are substantial, they are not sufficiently different from conditions in the nation as a whole to justify separate state standards. California's precipitation increases are not qualitatively different from changes in other areas. Rises in sea level in the coastal parts of the United States are projected to be as severe, or more severe, particularly in consequences, in the Atlantic and Gulf regions than in the Pacific regions . . . and while California's temperatures have increased by more than the national average, there are other places in the United States with higher or similar increases in temperature.

[Source: LA Times]

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