An e-mail message buried by the Bush administration because of its conclusions on global warming surfaced Tuesday, nearly two years after it was first sent to the White House and never opened.
The Bush administration, and then EPA administrator Stephen Johnson, refused to release the document when it was written in 2007, and labeled it “deliberative, do not distribute” to Democratic lawmakers. The White House instead allowed three senators to review it in July 2008, when excerpts were released.
The e-mail and the 28-page document attached to it, released Tuesday by the Environmental Protection Agency, show that back in December of 2007 the agency concluded that six gases linked to global warming pose dangers to public welfare, and wanted to take steps to regulate their release from automobiles and the burning of gasoline.
The document specifically cites global warming’s effects on air quality, agriculture, forestry, water resources and coastal areas as endangering public welfare.
That finding was rejected by the Bush White House, which strongly opposed using the Clean Air Act to address climate change and stalled on producing a so-called “endangerment finding” that had been ordered by the Supreme Court in 2007.
As a result, the Dec. 5 e-mail sent by the agency to Susan Dudley, who headed the regulatory division at the Office of Management and Budget was never opened, according to Jason Burnett, the former EPA official that wrote it.
The Obama administration in April made a similar determination, but also concluded that greenhouse gases endanger public health. The EPA is currently drafting the first greenhouse gas standards for automobiles, and recently signaled it would attempt to reduce climate-altering pollution from refineries, factories and other large industrial sources.
In response, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Republican lawmakers have criticized the EPA’s reasoning and called for a more thorough vetting of the science. An internal review by a dozen federal agencies released in May also raised questions about the EPA’s conclusion, saying the agency could have been more balanced and raising questions about the difficulty in linking global warming to health effects.
The agency released the e-mail and documents after receiving requests under the Freedom of Information Act.
Adora Andy, a spokeswoman for EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, said Tuesday that the draft shows the science in 2007 was as clear as it is today.
“The conclusions reached then by the EPA scientists should have been made public and should have been considered,” she said.
Large fires in Philadelphia — as police scramble to save City Hall
Protests in the City of Brotherly Love resulted in multiple police cares being lit on fire as windows were broken in the town's iconic City Hall.
Anti-police violence protests have erupted across America following the killing of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis.
Here are some of the scenes from the Philadelphia protests:
Trump Tower is ‘under siege’ as Chicago Police make arrests to defend the president’s building
Protesters marched on Trump Tower in Chicago on Saturday, as Chicago police in riot gear and on horses defend the president's building.
State police were deployed to the scene to back up local police, who are reportedly arresting protesters.
On video showed protesters taking a knee in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick.
Actor John Cusack was among those documenting the protest.
Here are some of the images from the scene:
George Floyd’s brother tears up discussing condolence phone call from Trump: ‘It hurt me’
The brother of George Floyd described the condolence phone call he received from President Donald Trump during a Saturday interview on MSNBC.
Philonise Floyd was interviewed by the Rev. Al Sharpton on "Politics Nation."
While Derek Chauvin has been arrested and charged with third degree murder, the other three officers involved in the killing remain free.
"They all need to be convicted of first degree murder and given the death penalty," Floyd said.
"What was the conversation with President Trump like?" Sharpton asked.
"It was so fast," Floyd replied.
"He didn't give me an opportunity to even speak. It was hard, I was trying to talk to him, but he just kept like pushing me off, like 'I don't want to hear what you're talking about.' And I just told him I want justice. I said that I couldn't believe they committed a modern-day lynching in broad daylight."