The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Martha Roberts, 303-447-7214,
Tony Kreindler, 202-210-5791,
Vickie Patton, 720-837-6239,

EDF Calls for Federal Agencies to Value the Benefits of Greenhouse Gas Reductions

New Report Finds Agencies Neglect Economic Upside of Global Warming Pollution Cuts


Defense Fund (EDF) called on the federal government today to value the
benefits of global warming pollution cuts under significant new
regulations, finding in a study that agencies consistently neglect
the benefits of greenhouse gas reductions when they assess the
economics of new rules.

"It's common sense that federal agencies should evaluate the potential climate benefits of major new regulations," said Martha Roberts, an EDF economic policy analyst.
"By neglecting the economic benefits of global warming pollution
reductions, we're missing important and efficient opportunities to
achieve climate security."

significant new rules are developed, government-wide policy
administered by the White House calls for federal agencies, in many
cases, to assess the benefits and costs of the new rules. The results
of these economic analyses can determine the design of the final rule.

A new EDF report, Carbon Counts (, reviews
the economic assessments performed for the Department of
Transportation's fuel economy standards, the Department of Energy's
furnace efficiency standard, and the Environmental Protection Agency's
small engine emission standards. The selection among the different
regulatory options considered for these rules has significant
implications for global warming pollution. Yet across the board, these
standards neglected the value of reducing greenhouse gas emissions,
overlooking cost-effective opportunities to cut pollution.

Department of Energy heralded the greenhouse gas reductions from its
furnace efficiency standards, yet omitted the value of climate
protection in actually developing the foundation of the rule," Roberts
said. "By relegating the benefit of a stable
climate to window dressing, the Agency may have missed important and
efficient opportunities to reduce global warming pollution."

Department of Transportation conducts an analysis of benefits and costs
to determine the appropriate fuel efficiency standard. If
the Agency fundamentally discounts the value of greenhouse gas
reductions in its analysis, it will again fail to secure the full
societal benefits of stronger fuel efficiency standards for energy
security and climate security.

Environmental Defense Fund's mission is to preserve the natural systems on which all life depends. Guided by science and economics, we find practical and lasting solutions to the most serious environmental problems. We work to solve the most critical environmental problems facing the planet. This has drawn us to areas that span the biosphere: climate, oceans, ecosystems and health. Since these topics are intertwined, our solutions take a multidisciplinary approach. We work in concert with other organizations -- as well as with business, government and communities -- and avoid duplicating work already being done effectively by others.