The following editorial appeared in the Dallas Morning News on Wednesday, Nov. 29:

It would seem a no-brainer that the federal agency charged with cleaning up our air would have the right to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions. But the Environmental Protection Agency still insists that the Clean Air Act doesn’t give it permission to do so.

In an equally wrongheaded argument, the EPA says that even if it had the OK, it wouldn’t act because studies don’t conclusively prove a link between greenhouse gases and global warming.

We hope that the Supreme Court will end this agency’s charade and compel it to do what Congress intended – regulate harmful emissions into the air.

Yes, the black-robed justices will need to listen carefully to intricate data, but more important, they must inject common sense into this debate. Unless you’re looking for a reason to avoid carbon-dioxide regulation, you don’t have to be a scientist to figure out that the Clean Air Act does, in fact, give the EPA that right.

The act says the EPA has authority to regulate “any air pollution agent or combination of such agents … that enters the ambient air, including any precursors to the formation of an air pollutant.” That certainly would cover carbon dioxide, which in high levels can cause respiratory problems, headaches, dizziness, sweating, restlessness, disorientation, visual distortion and, yes, climate change.

It’s too bad that the Supreme Court has to get involved for the EPA to take responsibility that it’s had all along. But if that’s what must happen for the next generation to have clean air to breathe, we’re eager to get the process kick-started any way possible.

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