For Immediate Release:
December 7, 2009
Contact: Virginia Cramer, 804-225-9113 x102
Obama EPA Finalizes Endangerment Finding
Paves Way for Action in Advance of Copenhagen Visit
Washington, DC: The Obama administration today completed a major step in America’s path to a tackling global warming and building a clean energy future. By finalizing the finding that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases represent a significant threat to public health and welfare, today's "endangerment finding," based on tens of thousands of public comments and years of work by EPA's career staff and scientists, gives the government a key tool to hold polluters accountable for their contribution to global warming.
The Sierra Club issues the following statement from Carl Pope, Executive Director:
"As the major global warming summit begins this week in Copenhagen, this announcement couldn’t come at a more important time. The Obama administration has followed through on its pledge to act and is demonstrating that the U.S. has turned away from eight years of inaction under the Bush administration."
"President Obama sees the Big Picture—by shifting to clean energy, and cracking down on the corporations that pollute the water we drink and the air we breathe, we can restore our economy to prosperity and reduce our dependence on oil and coal, all while tackling global warming."
"This is one more key commitment President Obama can bring to the world to show that the U.S. will do its part to fight global warming. A strong start in Copenhagen will allow the United States and the world to achieve final, binding domestic and international climate agreements later in 2010. Sierra Club will be working hard to ensure the success of this momentous conference."
Our three basic goals for the summit are:
• Ensure that developed countries, including the US, increase their commitments for greenhouse gas reductions, and that developing countries put concrete, meaningful actions on the table. This includes, where possible, stronger commitments to reduce CO2 emissions, but also new initiatives to deal with non-CO2 greenhouse pollutants, including methane and black carbon.
• Make significant progress toward a final deal on international climate financing that will include substantial commitments from developed countries, and immediately agree to a “prompt start” package for emissions reduction and adaptation to climate impacts in developing countries.
• Ensure that there is real transparency and verification for all developed country commitments and developing country actions.
For more on Sierra Club’s support of the endangerment finding and other administration actions on global warming, see www.sierraclub.org/bigpicture
For more information on Sierra Club’s work at COP15 visit: www.sierraclub.org/copenhagen