Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases Under Section 202(a) of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Clean Air Act


A. Overview

Pursuant to CAA section 202(a), the Administrator finds that greenhouse gases in the atmosphere may reasonably be anticipated both to endanger public health and to endanger public welfare. Specifically, the Administrator is defining the “air pollution” referred to in CAA section 202(a) to be the mix of six long-lived and directly-emitted greenhouse gases: carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2 O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6). In this document, these six greenhouse gases are referred to as “well-mixed greenhouse gases” in this document (with more precise meanings of “long lived” and “well mixed” provided in Section IV.A).

The Administrator has determined that the body of scientific evidence compellingly supports this finding. The major assessments by the U.S. Global Climate Research Program (USGCRP), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and the National Research Council (NRC) serve as the primary scientific basis supporting the Administrator’s endangerment finding.[1] The Administrator reached her determination by considering both observed and projected effects of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, their effect on climate, and the public health and welfare risks and impacts associated with such climate change. The Administrator’s assessment focused on public health and public welfare impacts within the United States. She also examined the evidence with respect to impacts in other world regions, and she concluded that these impacts strengthen the case for endangerment to public health and welfare because impacts in other world regions can in turn adversely affect the United States.

At: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2009/12/15/E9-29537/endangerment-and-cause-or-contribute-findings-for-greenhouse-gases-under-section-202a-of-the-clean