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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, before the House subcommittee on Energy and Power hearing on the "Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011.  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, before the House subcommittee on Energy and Power hearing on the "Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)  

Weird science: EPA Inspector General calls greenhouse-gas regulatory process flawed

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Caroline May
Political Reporter

In response to a report that could lead to questions about the credibility of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) , Oklahoma Republican Sen. James Inhofe, ranking member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, is calling for hearings to investigate. The report — from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the EPA — reveals that the scientific basis, on which the administration’s endangerment finding for greenhouse gases hinged, violated the EPA’s own peer review procedure.

In a report released Wednesday (at Sen. Inhofe’s request, dating back to April) the inspector general found that the EPA failed to follow the Data Quality Act and its own peer review process when it issued the determination that greenhouse gases cause harm to “public health and welfare.”

“I appreciate the inspector general conducting a thorough investigation into the Obama-EPA’s handling of the endangerment finding for greenhouse gases,” Inhofe said. “This report confirms that the endangerment finding, the very foundation of President Obama’s job-destroying regulatory agenda, was rushed, biased, and flawed. It calls the scientific integrity of EPA’s decision-making process into question and undermines the credibility of the endangerment finding.”

Inhofe lambasted the EPA for its failure to adhere to its own rules, outsourcing the science to the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change — and refusing to conduct its own analysis of the science — in the period leading up to its final endangerment finding.

“The endangerment finding is no small matter: Global warming regulations imposed by the Obama-EPA under the Clean Air Act will cost American consumers $300 to $400 billion a year, significantly raise energy prices, and destroy hundreds of thousands of jobs. This is not to mention the ‘absurd result’ that EPA will need to hire 230,000 additional employees and spend an additional $21 billion to implement its [green house gas] regime. And all of this economic pain is for nothing: As EPA Administrator [Lisa] Jackson also admitted before the Environmental and Public Works] committee, these regulations will have no affect on the climate.”

According to Inhofe, Jackson has failed in her 2009 vow to commit the Agency to high transparency standards. The senator will instruct the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works to hold hearings to investigate the EPA’s failings.

“Given what has come to light in this report, it appears that Obama-EPA cannot be trusted on the most consequential decision the agency has ever made,” Inhofe added.“I am calling for the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, the committee of jurisdiction over the EPA, to hold immediate hearings to address EPA’s failure to provide the required documentation and have the science impartially reviewed. EPA needs to explain to the American people why it blatantly circumvented its own procedures to make what appears to be a predetermined endangerment finding.”

The inspector general’s full report can be viewed here here.

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