Friday, May 15, 2009

My comments on EPA's Greenhouse Gas Findings

See my next entry, above, for how to submit your comment on EPA's proposed findings that greenhouse gases pose a threat to human health and welfare and that vehicle engines contribute to greenhouse gases (I know, these things seem obvious, but this is an important step in the process). I post this in the hope that it's helpful to someone wishing to submit their own comment. Of course, use your own words.

My name is Bonney Hughes. I am representing myself and my family. I have an M.S. in Environmental Toxicology from Cornell University. I have a blog,, that explores issues related to greenhouse gases, global warming, and citizen action. You may contact me through this blog.

As I'm sure you know, the vast majority of climate scientists agree that current and projected concentrations of greenhouse gases including carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) in the atmosphere threaten the public health and welfare of current and future generations, and that human activity is increasing the concentrations of these gases. There is
now abundant evidence to support these two statements, summarized by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; in The Hot Topic, by Gabrielle Walker and Sir David King; and in Field Notes from a Catastrophe by Elizabeth Kolbert, to name a few. Public health and welfare are and will be threatened by the effects of increases in greenhouse gases such as: increasing likelihood of stronger hurricanes; less snowfall and more variable rainfall resulting in more drought in some areas and more flooding in others (or a combination in some areas); more heat waves; rising sea levels; increasing rates of species extinction.

It is obvious that motor vehicle engines contribute to the atmospheric concentrations of these key greenhouse gases and hence to the threat of climate change. Motor vehicle engines produce these gases, these gases are very long-lasting in the atmosphere, and there were 244 million motor vehicles registered in the US in 2006 ( Since these gases emanate from a huge array of sources, and action by a minority of individuals or companies will not only be ineffective, but put these individuals and companies at a disadvantage in many cases, it is vital that the EPA and other branches of the US government take action to reduce greenhouse gases and ensure that organizations and individuals do so as well.

I strongly support EPA's Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings because they are true and because they represent a first step in this vital direction. I urge EPA and other branches of the US government to take all effective steps to slow and reduce the production of greenhouse gases to reach the goal of 350 ppm CO2 equivalents with all possible speed.

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