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Published: Tuesday, 10/27/2009

Another smoking gun

•HEN politics is allowed to transcend science, progress can be thwarted. And now there's proof that the Bush administration deliberately suppressed a report on climate change that could have advanced regulations to address the environmental peril.

We already had been told that the finding - submitted by the federal Environmental Protection Agency - concluded that global warming posed serious risks and that the government should begin regulating greenhouse gases most scientists agree are the major cause of the problem.

But recently, the actual document was released in response to a public records request showing that "the science in 2007 was as clear about global warming as it is today," according to current EPA officials.

In fact, the "endangerment finding" mirrors one proffered in the meantime by the Obama Administration, with both reaching the same conclusions that the public is endangered and regulation is necessary. Yet because the Bush-era finding ran counter to the White House position that opposed new government efforts to regulate greenhouse gases, it was never made public and no steps were taken to institute either major climate legislation or EPA regulations.

The inaction on climate change set efforts on behalf of the U.S. and the world back for a significant period. Such political manipulation of science should infuriate every truth-seeking citizen. Hopefully the current administration will make up for lost time with help from Congress.

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