Do not feel safe with the knowledge that Congress is trying to work out a compromise on the Cap and Trade energy bill. I know some are thinking that, if the compromise bill is passed, at least for the moment, this country won’t be brought to its knees. You think, as this administration wants you to, that we will still be competitive in the world’s markets as our products will not carry the imbedded cost, aka, tax, of paying for a permit that will allow the manufacture our products. And, you think, our energy bills may not rise for another ten years. So, maybe life is good, after all. Not so.
The Pandora’s Box, opened by the EPA’s declaration on April 17 that carbon is a threat to the public health, is far more cavernous than you could have imagined. Whether Congress reaches a compromise on this bill or not, this country will suffer. And, here’s one reason why.
Having determined that carbon is a “threat”, anyone in this country who chooses to do so can now sue any manufacturer, power plant, oil refinery, airport, or even your local dairy farm because it is emitting carbon. Industrious lawyers throughout the country are drafting “class action” lawsuits even as we speak, because, after all, carbon is a “threat”.
The net effect of these lawsuits, other than the obvious increase in the cost of products to pay the legal fees, will be a patch-work quilt of case law defining how much carbon emission is “dangerous”. Depending upon the jurisdiction in which you live, you will either have a a manufacturer who employs thousands, or a manufacturer that is forced to shut its doors and move to a more “carbon friendly” jurisdiction.
The pronouncement by the EPA that carbon is a threat, without accompanying regulations as to how much carbon is a threat, was insanity. So, let the litigation begin.