The US government is to regulate carbon dioxide emissions, having decided that it and five other greenhouse gases may endanger human health and well-being.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the move following a review of the scientific evidence.
The decision marks a major change from the Bush presidency, when the EPA argued it could not regulate CO2 because the gas was not a pollutant.
This decision will have a dramatic effect on government, the environment, and the cost of everything. The first ramification is that the EPA has now given itself dramatically more power. By announcing that anything with carbon dioxide is a threat to all our health, the EPA can now regulate any business that uses carbon dioxide. This means that almost every business in the country can now be controlled by the EPA.
The second ramification is that the cost of doing business will likely go up. By increasing regulatory power over CO2 emmissions, it will also increase the cost of producing energy. The White House is already signaling that they will use this decision to try and push through their cap and trade idea. The White House is using the threat of more EPA regulation to try and advance their own cap and trade agenda. This sort of political blackmail will lead consumers and businesses into choices that will only lead to higher costs.
Of course, all of this also means that an already all too powerful government has just usurped even more power. With the EPA now regulating CO2, the government has found yet another place in our lives to manage. All those that love liberty ought to be frightened by this ruling.