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Thursday, July 27, 2006

GAO Report Says EPA & DOE Can Do Better On Voluntary Carbon Dioxide Reduction Programs

A recent General Accounting Office (GAO) report says DOE and EPA can do more to meet the voluntary greenhouse gas reduction targets of program participants. The Bush administration has two voluntary programs that encourage participants to set emissions reduction goals and to implement programs that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions linked to climate change. The Climate Leaders Program (CLP), managed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), focuses on firms. The Climate VISION (Voluntary Innovative Sector Initiatives: Opportunities Now) Program, managed by the Department of Energy (DOE), focuses on trade groups. Did the Clinton administration have a carbon dioxide reduction program of any kind?

We believe these 'feel good' programs are nice but are political tools, like HOV lanes, to make us feel better. The Bush administration's Energy Policy Act of 2005 was the best greenhouse gas reduction mechanism because it promotes the construction of emission free nuclear power plants. The feel good programs, including the Methane-to-Markets Program, promote a climate change remediation ethic, but until China and India begin to take climate change seriously, the efforts of the rest of the world regarding greenhouse gas reductions are useless.

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