EPA Finalizes Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding

Two new findings follow a 2007 U.S. Supreme Court decision that ordered EPA to determine whether they endanger public health. The agency headed by Administrator Lisa Jackson now can finalize light-duty vehicle GHG standards it proposed earlier this year.

Two new findings issued Monday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency determine that greenhouse gases threaten the public health and welfare of the U.S. population, and that GHG emissions from on-road vehicles contribute to the threat. The findings follow a 2007 U.S. Supreme Court decision that ordered EPA to determine whether GHGs endanger public health. Now, EPA can finalize light-duty vehicle GHG standards it proposed earlier this year.

After the agency issued its proposed findings in April 2009, more than 380,000 comments were submitted.

"These long-overdue findings cement 2009's place in history as the year when the United States Government began addressing the challenge of greenhouse-gas pollution and seizing the opportunity of clean-energy reform," EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said. "Business leaders, security experts, government officials, concerned citizens, and the United States Supreme Court have called for enduring, pragmatic solutions to reduce the greenhouse gas pollution that is causing climate change. This continues our work towards clean energy reform that will cut GHGs and reduce the dependence on foreign oil that threatens our national security and our economy."

The April 2007 Supreme Court decision, Massachusetts v. EPA, held that GHGs fit within the Clean Air Act definition of air pollutants. EPA says road vehicles contribute more than 23 percent of total U.S. GHG emissions. EPA's proposed standards for light-duty vehicles, which are a subset of on-road vehicles, would reduce GHG emissions by nearly 950 million metric tons, according to the agency.

Full details are available at www.epa.gov.

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