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Bush, l'environnement, et l'article de Futura...

  1. #1


    Suite à l'article Etats-Unis : Des mesures fortes pour la protection de l'environnement ? et ce thread : http://forums.futura-sciences.com/viewtopic.php?t=559 .

    Je pense qu'il est intéressant de mettre cet article, qui reprend un peu trop facilement les déclarations de Bush sans comparer avec ses actions passées, en prespective avec des articles de presse qui paraissent bien plus pertinents.

    En voici trois qui décrivent ce qui se passe réélement...

    A Pollutant by Any Other Name

    NewYork Times February 22, 2003

    The pressure on President Bush to abandon his irresponsibly passive approach to global warming was ratcheted up this week. On Thursday the attorneys general of seven Northeastern states announced their intention to sue the administration — in the person of Christie Whitman, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency — for its failure to regulate power plant emissions of carbon dioxide, the main global warming gas, as required by the Clean Air Act.

    These same states frequently pressured Mrs. Whitman's Democratic predecessor, Carol Browner, to invoke various provisions of the act to reduce long-regulated pollutants like sulfur dioxide, which causes acid rain. The difference this time is that they are trying to get the federal government to pay attention to carbon dioxide, the one compound that remains completely unregulated despite mounting scientific evidence that it is likely to be the most dangerous pollutant of all.

    The Clean Air Act requires the E.P.A. to review and update standards governing power plant emissions every eight years. The lawsuit says that for 20 years the agency has failed to do these reviews. Had it done so, the suit contends, the agency would long ago have added carbon dioxide to the list of power plant emissions deserving of regulation — especially since power plants account for nearly 40 percent of all the carbon dioxide emitted in America today.

    The suit is thus a direct challenge to one of several reasons President Bush had advanced for not moving more forcefully to control carbon dioxide. The reason he gave for renouncing the Kyoto Protocol, the agreement on climate change signed by the Clinton administration in 1997 and since ratified by about 100 countries, is that aggressively reducing emissions would be too expensive. He also insists that carbon dioxide is not a pollutant as defined by the Clean Air Act. That's the reason he gives for not including carbon dioxide in the clean air legislation he has sent to Congress.

    The lawsuit says this is poppycock. One section of the act explicitly recognizes carbon dioxide as a pollutant, alongside more familiar culprits like sulfur dioxide. In addition, carbon dioxide plainly falls within the act's definition of what a pollutant is and, no less clearly, it meets criteria necessary for the E.P.A. administrator, in this case Mrs. Whitman, to regulate it.

    The suit could fail. State challenges to federal policy are always iffy. But it may at least inspire honest discussion about how to control the largest single source of carbon dioxide in the world. And it may force the administration to explain a global warming strategy that is becoming increasingly indefensible.

    Advisers tell Bush climate plan is useless

    Strategy 'lacks vision, goals, timetable and criteria'

    Oliver Burkeman in Washington
    Thursday February 27, 2003
    The Guardian


    George Bush's strategy on global warming suffered a setback yesterday when a panel of scientists convened at the request of the White House condemned it as lacking vision, and wasting time and money on research questions that were resolved years ago.

    Mr Bush's plan, introduced after the US backed out of the Kyoto protocol, replaces that treaty's call for mandatory limits on greenhouse gas emissions with a decade-long programme of research to determine the scale of the problem.

    But the 17 environmental experts, assembled by the National Academy of Sciences at the president's request, said in their report that the president's strategy "lacks most of the basic elements of a strategic plan: a guiding vision, executable goals, clear timetables and criteria for measuring progress", and misses the opportunity to cooperate more with other countries on research.

    "I've been doing ecosystems science for 30 years, and we know what we know and what we don't know," William Schlesinger, a panel member, told the Guardian. "Rather than focusing on the things we don't know, it's almost as if parts of the plan were written by people who are totally unfamiliar with where ecosystems science is coming from.

    "They say we ought to be monitoring methane in remote regions," said Dr Schlesinger, the dean of Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences in Durham, North Carolina. "Well, we've been monitoring some of these things for 30 years, and there's no question that the levels are rising."

    The Bush plan also urges, for example, more research on how carbon emissions are affected by forest fires, a question largely seen as resolved within the academy.

    "They didn't set the hard priorities," said Michael Prather, an earth scientist from the University of California at Irvine and a panel member. "From the scientists' point of view, we have a pretty good idea of what is happening."

    The experts also call for "greatly increased" spending on addressing climate change, far above the $1.7bn per year earmarked. They concede that the plan is "a solid foundation", going further towards formulating a strategy on global warming research - as required by a 1990 act of Congress - than either the first President Bush or Bill Clinton.

    James Mahoney, director of the government's climate change science programme, which is charged with executing the plan, said he welcomed the panel's criticisms. "Nobody ever undertook to do something like this before. There are certainly areas where we need to improve," he said. "But we're in a process where we pushed to very quickly turn around a battleship, and we've never had a plan before."

    But the scientists' findings may cause concern in the administration in the few weeks of the consultation period that remain, not least because the panel included experts from corporations including BP and Honeywell.

    Mr Bush has been accused of claiming that more research is needed in order to stall moves towards limiting US greenhouse gas emissions. Environmental groups accuse the oil company Exxon Mobil of leading a campaign in the US to discredit scientific findings suggesting that the dangers of global warming are grave.

    "There's no question that if you claim that not much is known, even if it is, then you delay the time at which you can say, OK, the research is unequivocal and we need to do something about the problem," Dr Schlesinger said. "It's not very far beneath the surface that there's an element of not taking any action here."

    Boxer Blasts Bush Administration For Withholding Report Detailing Environmental Risks To Children's Health

    February 25, 2003

    Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) today expressed her outrage that the Bush Administration took so long to release a report on children's environmental health and called for swift action to protect children from environmental pollution. "I believe the only reason we are seeing this report today is that the report was leaked to a newspaper last week," said Senator Boxer. Published reports indicate that EPA was in the final stages of reviewing the study last June, but it was not released until today.

    Boxer's preliminary reading of the report has led her to four conclusions.

    "First, because the report finds that nearly one million children live within one mile of a Superfund site, the Bush Administration must reverse its position and support the strongest possible Superfund program and ensure that the polluters pay for the messes they make," said Senator Boxer. "Instead of weakening Superfund, we must pass the Boxer/Chafee Toxic Clean-up Polluter Pays Renewal Act (S. 173), which would reinstate the polluter's fees and ensure sufficient and appropriate funding for Superfund." Boxer noted that the Bush Administration has decreased clean-ups to 40 per year (down from 87 per year at the end of the Clinton Administration) and has saddled the taxpayers with 80 percent of the clean-up costs.

    "Second," Boxer said, "because the report finds that children have an alarmingly high exposure to air pollution, we can and must reduce air pollution by passing the Jeffords Clean Power Act (S. 366)." The report finds that 30 percent of our children live in areas that violate public health air quality standards for ozone and smog and 8 percent of women of child bearing age had blood concentration levels of mercury that pose an increased risk to children. "The Clean Power Act requires significant reductions in air pollution while retaining the protections of the current Clean Air Act," Boxer said. "In contrast, President Bush's so-called Clear Skies proposal offers smaller reductions in pollution while dismantling the underlying Clean Air Act and its protections."

    Boxer continued, "Third, because the report finds that children's risk of getting cancer is greater than one in 100,000 from exposure to hazardous air pollutants, the administration must take much tougher action on air toxic regulations to stop this reign of cancer in our children. This must include stringent air toxics regulations for industrial and mobile sources of pollution. The administration's regulations are years late and far too weak."

    "And finally," Boxer said, "because the report finds that children face unacceptable health risks from pollution, we must set regulations and standards for all pollutants at levels that protect the most vulnerable populations, including our children. We can do that by passing my Children's Environmental Protection Act."

    Boxer concluded, " Even though this report is alarming, and the Administration's delay in releasing it is outrageous, we should not lose heart. I am committed to moving forward to strengthen our children's environmental health, as are many of my fellow Senators. I ask this Administration to turn away from its path of sacrificing our children to special interests and join me in establishing these important protections for our children's health."



  2. #2

    Pour rebondir sur ce que tu dis, Bastet, voici ce que j'avais lu :

    Bush lance un programme pour une usine génératrice d'énergie non polluante
    WASHINGTON, 27 fév (AFP) - Le président américain George W. Bush a annoncé jeudi que les Etats-Unis allaient lancer un programme de dix ans d'un montant total d'un milliard de dollars pour développer un projet pilote d'usine non polluante de génération d'énergie.

    "Nous allons entreprendre ce projet avec des partenaires internationaux et de l'industrie de la génération d'énergie pour réduire significativement la pollution de l'atmosphère en capturant et stockant les gaz à effet de serre", a annoncé M. Bush dans un communiqué.

    Le département de l'Energie travaille depuis plusieurs années sur ce programme appelé "Vision 21".

    Celui-ci vise à développer une usine génératrice d'énergie qui ne serait pas limitée à l'électricité mais qui pourrait également produire de l'hydrogène ou simplement de la chaleur en utilisant plusieurs combustibles comme le charbon, le charbon liquéfié, le gaz naturel, la biomasse, le coke de pétrole ou les ordures ménagères.

    Cette usine utiliserait également des procédés de capture et de stockage des gaz à effet de serre qui sont identifiés comme une cause du réchauffement de la planète.

    La Maison Blanche a annoncé jeudi à ce propos que le secrétaire d'Etat Colin Powell et le secrétaire à l'Energie Spencer Abraham vont lancer un forum international sur la séquestration du gaz carbonique pour développer ces technologies.

    L'une des techniques de séquestration sur laquelle les Etats-Unis et les compagnies pétrolières travaillent est la séquestration du CO2 dans les océans. Le gaz carbonique est récupéré directement à la source d'émission, par exemple les centrales thermiques, puis envoyé par pipelines au fond des océans où, comprimé par la pression des eaux, il s'étale sous forme liquide.

    Une autre technique envisagée est la séquestration dans des cavités ou grottes marines, comme c'est actuellement le cas pour un projet pilote en Norvège.

    L'administration Bush a refusé de signer le protocole de Kyoto de 1997 pour tenter de ramener les émissions de gaz à effet de serre à leurs niveaux de 1990 d'ici 2012 en estimant qu'il défavorisait l'industrie américaine et en dénonçant le fait qu'il ne concerne pas les pays en voie de développement comme la Chine, dont les émissions de gaz à effet de serre sont importantes.

    Les Etats-Unis, première économie mondiale, sont également les plus importants pollueurs de la planète.

    Le président Bush a toutefois lancé ces dernières semaines plusieurs initiatives en faveur de l'énergie non polluante comme le développement de véhicules fonctionnant avec des piles à combustible à hydrogène.

    Il a annoncé lors de son discours sur l'état de l'Union à la fin janvier qu'il allait demander au Congrès de débloquer 1,2 milliard de dollars sur cinq ans pour accélérer le développement de ce type de véhicules.

    M. Bush s'est également félicité jeudi du dépôt devant le Congrès de son projet de loi "Ciel dégagé" (Clear Skies initiative) visant à diminuer de 70% les émissions polluantes des centrales thermiques.

    Celui-ci fait partie du plan sur la protection de l'environnement annoncé par le président américain en février 2002 pour se substituer au protocole de Kyoto.
    Quand on voit les combustibles qu'il propose (le charbon, le charbon liquéfié, le gaz naturel, la biomasse, le coke de pétrole ou les ordures ménagères), bonjour la pollution. Le charbon !!!! je rêve !!! non seulement il produit bien plus de CO2 que le gaz à production d'énergie égale, mais en plus, c'est plein de soufre et autres saloperies.
    Quant aux procédés de séquestration du CO2, aucun n'est au point, et ils me semblent plutôt inquiétants (stocker à haute pression sous la mer : qu'est-ce qui garantit qu'il n'y aura pas désequestration à un moment ?).
    Ce qui me scandalise aussi, c'est quand Bush dénonce la Chine, qui certes émet des gaz à effet de serre, mais bien moins que les Etats Unis en valeur absolue, et encore moins si on rapporte au nombre d'habitants. Les rizières émettent du méthane, gaz à effet de serre. Les Chinois n'ont qu'à se serrer la ceinture pour permettre au Américains d'utiliser la climatisation, non mais !!
    Quant au développement des voitures avec des piles à hydrogène, c'est bien beau, mais avec quoi on produit l'hydrogène ??
    En bref,
    Heureusement, tous les Américains ne sont pas d'accord avec Bush, et plusieurs Etats ont imposé des lois environnementales plus restrictives.

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