Is the current administration's lax environmental enforcement responsible?
Lax enforcement? That’s a misnomer. How about wanton destruction of environmental protection legislation? How about pandering to the worst polluters? This administration has done more harm to the environment than any other in US HISTORY! There are far too many environmental atrocities committed by this administration to put in this post. Here’s a sample list of just those dealing with clean air and energy in 2004:
Polluter support for Bush paying off big (05/03/04)
Energy Department worked with industry to exaggerate NSR benefits (03/03/04)
EPA stacking government panel with industry lobbyists (03/01/04)
Energy lobbyists pay to play with Congress, White House officials (01/07/04)
Mining company gets price break on federal land (04/02/04)
Bush discounts wilderness for campaign contributors (03/01/04)
Forest Service sneaks mining, drilling into Alabama's national forests (02/11/04)
And my personal favorite:
Church leaders chastise President Bush for bad air policies (04/22/04) National Resources Defense Council
[Bush’s] Clear Skies legislation sets new targets for emissions of sulfur dioxide, mercury, and nitrogen oxides from U.S. power plants. But these targets are weaker than those that would be put in place if the Bush administration simply implemented and enforced the existing law
! Compared to current law, the Clear Skies plan would allow three times more toxic mercury emissions, 50 percent more sulfur emissions, and hundreds of thousands more tons of smog-forming nitrogen oxides. It would also delay cleaning up this pollution by up to a decade compared to current law and force residents of heavily-polluted areas to wait years longer for clean air compared to the existing Clean Air Act. NRDC
That doesn’t even include drinking water, the oceans, wetlands, wildlife, fish, national parks and forests, endangered species, toxic chemicals and nuclear waste and on and on ad nauseum. The man's a menace.Should it even be the government's responsibility to enforce air toxic emissions laws against polluting industrial facilities?
Yes.Should the existing laws be tightened?
The laws that used to exist should be put back into effect and enforced.