In its Proposed Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases Under Sections 202(a) of the Clean Air Act , the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) places six greenhouse gases into one basket. All are treated as equal, primary culprits in the anthropogenic enhancement of the earth’s greenhouse effect, and thus the EPA proposes to find that they “endanger the public health and welfare of current and future generations.” The six are carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, and sulfur hexafluoride.
But for many reasons, one of these gases is not like the others and should be considered separately. That gas is carbon dioxide.
The Green Greenhouse Gas
Carbon dioxide (CO2) is essential to life on earth as we know it. It is a necessary ingredient in the photosynthetic recipe that produces the oxygen that we breathe as well as the carbohydrates that we eat.…