Senator Boxer: Dangerously Ignorant on CO2
She rants on the House floor about the health effects of carbon in the air, absolutely ignorant that the amendment being discussed was about carbon dioxide. Yes, really. (With transcript and video.)
April 6, 2011 - 12:00 am
I hardly know where to begin in describing how ignorant and vacuous Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) is on this issue. I know that sounds harsh, and it’s intended to be for so many, many reasons.
On March 30, Senator Boxer went on a tirade about how despicable the Republicans were for attaching an amendment to the Small Business Innovation Research Bill (SBIR). The amendment, sponsored by Senator Mitch McConnell (R-TN), would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating emissions of greenhouse gases to address climate change. The principal gas in question that the EPA wants to regulate (er, tax) is carbon dioxide.
Carbon DIOXIDE! Not carbon.
The first thing Senator Boxer said on the floor, immediately exposing her profound understanding of scientific knowledge:
There has been an amendment that was attached to this bill on the very first day that would stop the Environmental Protection Agency forever from enforcing the Clean Air Act as it relates to carbon pollution. … It is essentially a repeal of the Clean Air Act as it involves a particular pollutant, carbon, which has been found to be an endangerment to our people.
She is so very wrong, already. First, the amendment is not a repeal of the Clean Air Act. The Clean Air Act is supposed to regulate pollution — this amendment is intended to stop the EPA from regulating a harmless and beneficial trace gas, carbon dioxide. Without carbon dioxide in the air, all life on Earth would die. It is essential for all plant life. Likely the senator does not know she was exhaling copious amounts of it during her rant.
Carbon dioxide is not dangerous to human health. In the very hall she was speaking in, it is possible and likely that carbon dioxide levels were three to five times higher than the air outside. Servicemen on submarines breathe air with up to 8,000 parts per million of carbon dioxide with no harmful effects — the Earth’s atmosphere currently contains only 390 parts per million.
Her further remarks are so full of errors, it’s hard to know which ones are worth discussing: virtually everything she said was not so.
She referred to a letter from the American Lung Association (which deserves just as much scorn here. The letter is a disgrace — the ALA should know better than to say that by not regulating carbon dioxide the health of Americans will be compromised. Apparently they are not worried about their professional credibility, as the letter actually supports the absurd notion that carbon dioxide is air pollution). Said Boxer:
And what is the science telling us? That it is dangerous to breathe in air pollution with lots of carbon in it.
Once again, not what she was supposed to be there to talk about.
She then entered into the record a despicable letter signed by a long list of environmental groups — groups that are anti-business, anti-civilization, anti-human — that read, among other things:
Medical professionals and public health organizations agree that carbon dioxide pollution is a serious public health issue.
No, they do not. There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support this claim. It is 100% false. She continued:
Compromising the work of the EPA means that more Americans will suffer from the impacts of severe asthma attacks.
What? How did she get there?
More children will end up in hospitals attached to respirators …
Are you kidding me? From CO2?