Posts Tagged ‘mercury’

Big Costs, Illusory Benefits: Why Congress Should Nix The Utility MACT

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Source:  CEI

http://etc.usf.edu/clipart/69300/69309/69309_mining_coal.htm

 

By Marlo Lewis

The U.S. Senate is expected to vote soon on legislation (S.J.Res.37) sponsored by Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) to overturn one of the most costly regulations ever adopted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Known as the Utility MACT Rule, the regulation establishes first-ever maximum achievable control technology (MACT) standards for hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions from power plants.

Mercury is the principal HAP targeted by the Rule. Unlike most air pollutants, mercury poses health risks not via inhalation but after being deposited in water bodies. Microbes can transform some of the mercury into an organic compound, methylmercury, which can accumulate in aquatic food chains. For humans, the “primary route of exposure” is eating fish. (more…)

FAULTY FDEP SCIENCE DRIVES UNNECESSARY FLORIDA MERCURY SCARE

Friday, June 15th, 2012

Source:  SPPI

There is a new paper posted at the SPPI main web site on the continuing mercury scare.

Dr. Willie Soon has been researching and writing on the science of mercury for nearly a decade.  This short paper discusses the fabricated justifications used by Florida to demand new restrictions on coal use.

Debate is raging in Florida over proposed regulations to slash mercury (and other emissions) from coal-fired power plants, based on claims that doing so will safeguard environmental quality and human health. Much of the information being used to support the proposal comes from the US Environmental Protection Agency and is being used by EPA and in other states to justify similar rules.

There is just one big problem. As this paper by Dr. Willie Soon explains, the information is based on highly selective use of data and reports, misleading computer models, and health and environmental assertions that simply are not supported by scientific or medical facts. With more public hearings being scheduled over the coming months in Florida and other states, his paper would provide a real service to citizens, regulators, and members of Congress and state legislatures.

(As noted in the paper, an article very similar to this paper was submitted to 43 papers in Florida – and rejected by all of them. It is a sad commentary, indeed. However, the Washington Times did publish a slightly shorter version of this analysis.

Other detailed papers on the real science of Mercury can be found here:

http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/mercury/

 

EPA Is Far More Deadly Than Mercury

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Source: Wash Times

[SPPI Note:  For more  information on the truth about Mercury, see here.

Two-page Fact sheet here.]

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by Willie Soon and Paul Driessen

SOON and DRIESSEN: EPA: Extreme Punishment Authority

New air-pollution rules will impose exorbitant costs for illusory health benefits

On Dec. 16, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson released new Clean Air Act National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants. Once again, she touted the supoosedly huge benefits of controlling emissions of mercury and other air toxics from coal- and oil-fired power plants and electric generating units (EGUs).

This final rule will be one of the most expensive ever devised by EPA. The actual benefits, however, are minimal to imaginary. Americans should no longer tolerate being penalized by the “Extreme Punishment Authority.”

EPA itself says the purported “hazards to public health” from mercury and non-mercury emissions from American EGUs are “anticipated to remain after imposition” of the new regulations. (more…)

No Benefits, Extensive Harm in EPA’s Mercury Rules

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

Source:  National Journal

By Craig Rucker

[SPPI Note:  SPPI Mercury Papers found here:  http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/mercury/ ]

EPA mercury rules for electricity generating units are based on false science and economics

The Environmental Protection Agency clams its “final proposed” Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) rules will eliminate nearly all toxic pollution from electrical generating units, bring over $60 billion in annual health benefits, and prevent thousands of premature deaths yearly – all for “only” $11 billion a year in compliance costs.

All of this may be true in the virtual reality of EPA computer models, linear extrapolations, cherry-picked health studies and statistics, government press releases and agency-generated public comments. However, in the real world inhabited by families, employers and other energy users, the new rules will bring few benefits, but will impose extensive costs that the agency chose to minimize or ignore in its analysis.

Emissions of mercury and other air toxics from power plants have been declining steadily for decades, as older generating units have been replaced with more efficient, less polluting systems or been retrofitted with better pollution control technologies. While a few older plants still violate EPA’s proposed rules –the new rules are simply not based on credible scientific and epidemiological studies. (more…)

Save the light bulb!

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

Source: CFACT

by Bonner Cohen, Ph. D.

[SPPI Note:  see extensive SPPI paper at:  http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/originals/cfl_fires.html ]

We’re about to lose our light bulbs.

Among the many foolish things the political class in Washington has foisted on an unsuspecting public in recent years was the mandated phase-out of one of the most successful inventions in human history, the incandescent light bulb.

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, passed by a Democratic Congress and signed into law by President Bush, set in motion a scheme to phase out the incandescent light bulb, replacing it with what the public was told were “more efficient” and “climate friendly” alternatives. Those who questioned the wisdom of the move were assured that emerging technologies, specifically the Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL), would more than fill our lighting needs. (more…)

US: The myth of killer mercury

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Source:  Hacer

by Willie Soon and Paul Driessen

New rules use doctored evidence to cause economic pain and impair human health.

The Environmental Protection Agency recently issued 946 pages of new rules, requiring that U.S. power plants sharply reduce (already low) emissions of mercury and 83 other air pollutants. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson claims that, while the regulations will cost electricity producers $10.9 billion annually, they will save 17,000 lives and generate up to $140 billion in health benefits.

There is no factual basis for these assertions. To build its case, EPA systematically cherry-picked supportive studies (many of them dated) and ignored extensive evidence and clinical studies that contradict its regulatory agenda, which is to punish hydrocarbon use and close down coal-fired power plants. (more…)

EPA and the Merucry Scare

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Source:  CFACT

by Paul Driessen

Trying to correct all the disinformation about “mercury and air toxics” is a full-time job

Ever since public, congressional and union anger and anxiety persuaded the Environmental Protection Agency to delay action on its economy-strangling carbon dioxide rules, EPA has been on a take-no-prisoners crusade to impose other job-killing rules for electricity generating plants.

As President Obama said when America rejected cap-tax-and-trade, “there’s more than one way to skin the cat.” If Congress won’t cooperate, his EPA will lead the charge. Energy prices will “skyrocket.” Companies that want to build coal-fired power plants will “go bankrupt.” His administration will “fundamentally transform” our nation’s energy, economic, industrial and social structure. (more…)

The Mercury Scare

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

Source:  Power America

by Don Dears

The threat from mercury is being overly hyped by the EPA in its efforts to demonize and close coal-fired power plants. There are two reasons why the threat is far less than the EPA claims.

First, does mercury cause harm?

As reported by the Wall Street Journal, “The gold standard in mercury research is a University of Rochester study that tracked a group of Seychelles Island children from birth to nine years old. While their mothers ate fish similar to that consumed in the U.S., they ate 10 times as much and had an average of six times as much mercury in their bodies. Yet researchers found no negative effects in their children.”

The alarmists refer to a study of Faroe Island children that has been discredited for not having a statistical correlation of test results and because the mothers consumed other toxins such as DDT. The main cause for high mercury levels in Faroe Island women was whale meat – not a likely source of food in the U.S. (more…)

The Myth of Killer Mercury

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source: WSJ

[SPPI Note:  Numerous SPPI papers expose the EPA's false mercury claims in considerable detail: http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/mercury/

A concise Mercury Fact Sheet can be downloaded here: http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/mercury_fact_sheet.pdf ]

By WILLIE SOON AND PAUL DRIESSEN

OPINION

Panicking people about fish is no way to protect public health.

The Environmental Protection Agency recently issued 946 pages of new rules requiring that U.S. power plants sharply reduce their (already low) emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson claims that while the regulations will cost electricity producers $10.9 billion annually, they will save 17,000 lives and generate up to $140 billion in health benefits.

There is no factual basis for these assertions. To build its case against mercury, the EPA systematically ignored evidence and clinical studies that contradict its regulatory agenda, which is to punish hydrocarbon use. (more…)

And the beat-down goes on – EPA and Mercury

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

Source:  SPPI

by Paul Driessen

Proposed EPA rules will do more harm than good for human health, especially for minorities

Presidential candidate Barack Obama promised that his policies would cause electricity rates to “skyrocket” and “bankrupt” any company trying to build a coal-fired generating plant. This is one promise he and his über-regulators are keeping.

President Obama energetically promotes wind and solar projects that require millions of acres of land and billions of dollars in subsidies, to generate expensive, intermittent electricity and create jobs that cost taxpayers upwards of $220,000 apiece – most of them in China.

His Interior Department is locking up more coal and petroleum prospects, via “wild lands” and other designations, and dragging its feet on issuing leases and drilling permits. Meanwhile, his Environmental Protection Agency is challenging shale gas drilling and fracking, and imposing draconian carbon dioxide emission rules, now that Congress and voters have rejected cap-tax-and-trade. That’s for starters. (more…)

No more double standards

Monday, November 1st, 2010

Source:  Wattsup

Guest post by Paul Driessen

False, misleading or fraudulent claims have long brought the wrath of juries, judges and government agencies down on perpetrators. So have substandard manufacturing practices.

* GlaxoSmith Klein has agreed to plead guilty and pay a $750-million fine for manufacturing deficiencies at a former pharmaceuticals plant. Even though there was no indication of patient harm, said the US attorney, the fine was needed “to pressure companies to follow the rules.”

* Johnson & Johnson was recently slapped with a $258-million jury verdict for allegedly misleading claims about the safety and superiority of an antipsychotic drug. J&J’s actions “defrauded the Louisiana Medicaid system,” prosecutors argued. (The company intends to appeal.)

* The Feds have also prosecuted baseball players for lying to congressional investigators about using performance-enhancing steroids. Said a prosecutor: “Even when you’re just providing information to the Legislative Branch, you need to be truthful.”

Who could oppose following the rules, making quality products and being honest? But shouldn’t these values apply where far more is at stake than a few companies, pills, baseball records or bad role models? Shouldn’t we demand that these rules apply to people and actions that have unprecedented impact on lives, livelihoods, liberties and communities throughout the country? (more…)

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