]]]]]]  Jimmy Bush's Coast-to-Coast Clean Air Catastrophe   [[[[[[
                       By Warren T. Brookes             (1/7/1989)
          From Human Events, 16 December 1989, p. 10
        (includes corrections made by HE a week later)

   Recently  in   Los  Angeles,  President   Bush  addressed  the
zero-population ``green''  groupies of  Hollywood at ``Globescope
Pacific''  where   Jimmy  Carter's   ``Global  2000''   paean  to
future-malaise was miraculously revived in a five-day conference.
[Correction: President Bush was listed as keynote speaker but did
not attend the event.]  The Carter sweater has been replaced by a
green hair shirt.
   Meanwhile,  Detroit,  already  recessionary  from  the Federal
Reserve's  interest  rate  assault,  is  bracing  itself  for the
passage  of  the Bush  Clean  Air  Act, which  will  (among other
things) force all  Americans to pay  $20 billion more  a year for
driving -- primarily because of smog in the Los Angeles Basin.
   In  1988,  Congress  passed  the  Reagan  catastrophic  health
insurance program to  provide benefits no one  wanted at costs no
one could afford.  It  may repeat that mistake  on the Bush Clean
Air Act.
   Sadly,  just as  congressmen  listened only  to self-appointed
pressure groups  when they  passed catastrophic  health, they are
now running  like scared  sheep before  the yapping environmental
shepherd  hounds  to  make the  already  foolish  Bush  bill more
      The difference  is that in  this case the  costs will be
   hidden in  10 per  cent to  20 per  cent higher electricity
   bills and  up to  $1,000 to  $1,500 on  each new  car sales
   The largest share of that cost will lower the level of surface
ozone and carbon  monoxide in big  cities.  This will  be done in
part by costly new tailpipe controls and an ``on-board'' charcoal
canister to trap and recycle fueling fumes.
   That  little  doozie  alone  could  turn  cars  into ignitable
torches, while requiring  one million cars  to burn methanol (one
of  the  most   toxic  substances  ever   considered  for  public
distribution).  It could  also add 100 to  300 poisoning deaths a
year, while doing  almost nothing for emissions  on 1983 or later
model cars.
   The premise of  this costly madness is  that the United States
now  faces  a ``crisis''  in  surface ozone  and  carbon monoxide
levels.  Congress will  force all cars sold  in the United States
to  reach  California's  stringent  new  1993  to  2007  tailpipe
emission standards  to reduce  volatile organic  compounds (VOCs)
and nitrogen oxide (NOX).
   Those standards may  well make sense  for southern California,
but they make absolutely no sense for the rest of the nation.  In
the first place, Los Angeles is the only urban area that needs to
cut nitrogen  oxide.  But  since NOX  itself ``consumes'' surface
ozone, reducing it makes ozone more costly to control.  Congress'
action will throw dozens of clean cities out of ozone compliance.
   The stupidity of all this is that, ``Except for L.A., there is
no ozone crisis in  the United States.  It  is simply untrue that
hundreds  of  millions of  Americans  are exposed  to  high ozone
levels.  The ozone problem in the  Los Angeles basin is the worst
in the nation and completely unlike that other areas face.''
   So  says Dr.  Kay Jones,  one of  the nation's  most respected
environmental  officials, who  until  1988 served  as  the senior
adviser on the President's Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)
for both Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan.
   Dr.   Jones'  report   shows,  contrary   to  environmentalist
propaganda, U.S.  urban air  quality has  been steadily improving
under  current catalytic  technology,  cutting auto  emissions by
half since 1970. (See Table.)
   Jones, who is now a  private consultant for the industry-based
Clean Air Working Group, says, ``Most American cities do not need
a program comparable to that envisioned in Los Angeles....''
   The reason is  clear: Over the  last five years  (1985 to 1989
inclusive), 41 of the 71  major urban ``ozone attainment'' areas,
representing over  70 per cent  of all Americans,  are already in
compliance, with no more  than one day a  year with over one hour
of surface ozone levels above 0.12 parts per million (ppm).
   Another two are ``marginal'' with only two to five days a year
of ``nonattainment,'' seven are  ``moderate,'' having from six to
14 days a year  of elevated ozone, and  only one, Los Angeles, is
``severe,'' averaging more than 138 days a year with high ozone.
   And even  these averages  include the  very rare  1988 drought
year,  when   only  15  cities   ``attained''  the  Environmental
Protection Agency ozone standard.   But 1989 performance (through
Oct.  10,  1989) demonstrated  that  1988 was,  Jones  said, ``an
abberational fluke.''
   Indeed, it  was.  Atlanta,  which had  19 ``ozone exceedance''
days in  1988, had only  one in  1989; Baltimore with  34 in 1988
fell to two in 1989; Boston with 26 in 1988 fell to five in 1989;
Chicago from 27 down to three;  Washington from 30 down to three,
and so on.
   In fact, ``The majority of  U.S. cities where ozone levels now
exceed federal standards will  likely come into attainment within
five years without additional controls,'' Jones said.
   That's  because 83  percent of  the  pollution now  comes from
pre-1983 cars,  which make up  less than half  the present fleet.
As those cars are  replaced, total VOCs will  fall another 30 per
cent by 1995.
   While population and car use  will modestly reverse that trend
in some cities  after 1995, ``outside  California, the health and
safety  risks  are  too insignificant  to  warrant  that  kind of
draconian measure.  We do  not have to treat  the nation as if it
were Los Angeles.''  But try and tell that to ``Jimmy'' Bush.

               Trends in Auto Pollution Emissions
               Total Emissions*               Concentrations**
           -----------------------        -----------------------
           VOCs      CO       Lead       Ozone       CO      Lead
1970 ..... 12.4     71.8     163.6       0.158     12.86     1.07
1980 .....  8.2     52.6      59.4       0.145      9.08     0.55
1986 .....  6.5     42.6       3.5       0.123      7.21     0.15
1980-86 Trend with no Change in Policy:
1990 .....  5.6     36.9       0.6       0.110      5.98     0.04
   * In millions of metric  tons except for carbon monoxide (CO),
which is in thousands of metric tons.
   **  In  parts  per  million  except  for  lead,  which  is  in
micrograms per cubic meter.
   Source:  Council  on  Environmental  Quality,  1987-88 Report.
Trend projection by author.

      [The following is not part of the original article.]

From Human Events, 6 January 1990, p. 19, col. 4:


      The  December  16  Warren  T.  Brookes  column  entitled
   ``Jimmy Bush's  Coast-to-Coast Clean  Air Catastrophe (page
   10)  incorrectly stated  that  President Bush  had recently
   addressed  the  ``Globescope  Pacific''  conference  in Los
      Writing on the  same day as  the conference, Mr. Brookes
   had  relied  on  the  conference  program  that  listed the
   President as the keynote  speaker.  The President, however,
   did not attend the event.

[Sysop's note on the correction above:  ... But Bush's name was
listed on the propaganda sheets prior to the meeting, and Limp 
Wimp Bush had no objections, so he did intend to go to the cir-
cus, though he may later have been interrupted by other activi-
ties like maybe crawling on all fours before Butcher Deng.]

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