The American Tradition Institute is an independent 501(c)3 “think tank” associated with, but completely independent from, American Tradition Partnership.
Statement of ATI’s Lead Counsel on American Tradition Institute v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
(US District Court, Eastern District of Virginia No. 1:12-cv-1066)
There are few occasions in life that emerge directly from the core of an individual and almost never are those memorialized in a law suit. On Friday, September 21, 2012, I took five copies of a complaint to the Albert V. Bryan U.S. Courthouse in Alexandria, Virginia, filing one of them with the court and having each of the rest stamped and then sent to four senior government officials, Attorney General Eric Holder, U.S. Attorney Neil H. MacBride, EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson and EPA General Counsel Scott Fulton. I sent them summons to appear and defend themselves in part because of my first name.
I was named after David Steiner, a man who died of starvation in Buchenwald concentration camp on May 3, 1945. Tattooed on his body was the number 59059. He was witness to horrors that, today, we have a hard time even contemplating, something that I thought would never exist on this planet again – the abhorrent practice of giving human subjects poisons in order to determine what subsequently happens to them.
I have always been deeply affected by the circumstances of my great-uncle’s death. It is a heavy burden to carry the name of such a victim. As I matured, I committed my life to giving to our civilization that which David Steiner was never able to give himself. I have given 37 years of service to the United States, most of that in an effort to protect human health and the environment as a professional at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
I was able to secure a position of responsibility and trust at EPA in large part because the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offered me the opportunity to obtain graduate degrees and prepare myself for a career in public service. Until a few weeks ago, I had been a strong supporter of each. Then Steven Milloy asked me to represent him and other members of the American Tradition Institute who have stories much like mine, or otherwise cannot countenance such human experimentation.
Steve’s story is worse than death. His uncle, Zoran Galkanovic, was incarcerated at the Mauthausen concentration camp. Upon threat of death, Mr. Galkanovic was forced to rise each morning and identify those individuals at the concentration camp too ill to work, knowing they would subsequently be executed that very day. Because of the inhumanity forced on Mr. Galkanovic, Mr. Milloy has accepted as a family responsibility the fight against any government who subjects its citizens to inhumane treatment. Who knew it would be our government? Who knew it would be the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency? Who knew that human experimentation would be done on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill? Who knew it would be an official body of that University that approved this research?
On first blush, I simply could not believe Mr. Milloy. Then I looked carefully at the facts and at the law. This case involves the intentional exposure of human subjects to “fine particulate” matter, also known as PM2.5. EPA obtained their PM2.5 from a diesel truck. It is difficult to overstate the atrocity of this research. EPA parked a truck’s exhaust pipe directly beneath an intake pipe on the side of a building. The exhaust was sucked into the pipe, mixed with some additional air and then piped directly into the lungs of the human subjects. EPA actually has pictures of this gas chamber, a clear plastic pipe stuck into the mouth of a subject, his lips sealing it to his face, diesel fumes inhaled straight into his lungs.
Unbelievable as that may seem, consider the additional fact that EPA has officially concluded that this gas is a genotoxic carcinogen and that there is no exposure level below which it can be considered safe. In fact, EPA Administrator Jackson testified to Congress that of all deaths occurring in the United States, 1 in 4 “is attributable to PM2.5.” She told them “Particulate matter causes premature death. It doesn’t make you sick. It’s directly causal to dying sooner than you should.”
Under the law, under EPA regulations and under EPA policy, this human experimentation is strictly prohibited. To conduct human experimentation, the human subjects must be properly informed of the risks they face and these risks must be less than the potential benefit of the experiment. My family knows how that works too.
Few today know the ravages of Polio, but some of us are old enough to remember it too well. Susan Paidar was a childhood neighbor, the same age as one of my brothers. She died in an iron lung. And, she was one of the last victims of this terrible disease, in small part because of the courage of one of my brothers. In 1952, at age 6, my brother Rick was selected to be in the first human test group for the Salk vaccine. He was offered the possibility of never having to worry about polio again. He was a human subject and there was a real benefit from that human experimentation.
In the section describing the mandatory benefit that must be offered to the human subjects, EPA’s PM2.5 “informed consent” baldly states “there is no benefit.” Worse, the form never informs the subjects that they will be inhaling diesel fumes, never tells them the gas is a carcinogen, never tells them about all the other toxic substances in diesel exhaust pouring into their lungs, never tells them that because PM2.5 is genotoxic, it might cause disease in children they might wish to have.
Medical ethicist, Professor John D. Dunn, MD, JD, called EPA’s human experimentation “scandalously unethical and immoral” and said “There can be no further tolerance of this misconduct.” This is not the EPA I knew. This is not the University of North Carolina I knew. This is not the American Tradition of our nation. But, this is why I travelled to the U.S. Courthouse in Alexandria, Virginia – to put a stop to it.
David W. Schnare, Esq., MSPH, PhD.
Environmental Law Center
American Tradition Institute.
Read the complaint and declarations here.
For additional details see here.
“The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission says Idaho Power’s long-term purchase agreement with wind farms means that it must buy electricity from the farms even when demand for power is low,” The Associated Press reports.
“Idaho Power officials have contended that they should be allowed to stop contractually required electricity purchases during periods of light load. The company says the requirement forces them to back down other energy generators like coal-fired plants to balance the power system, increasing costs in the long run.”
ATP has been the lead advocate for reforms allowing states to get out of Expensive Energy Mandates forcing them to buy higher-priced, experimental energy from politically-connected firms. Orders like today’s from the Obama administration send utility bills higher, hurting families and putting people out of business.
Studies also show wind power increases air pollution by forcing coal-powered plants to ramp up and down production to accommodate the unpredictable amount of electricity wind adds to the power grid. Like a diesel engine in stop-and-go traffic, coal plants that had been burning cleanly are forced to burn dirtier, making the atmosphere more polluted than it would be without wind power.
Today, the House of Representatives, by a bipartisan vote of 233-175 approved H.R. 3409, the Stop the War on Coal Act, a package of five bills that will help end the Obama Administration’s war on coal that threatens thousands of American jobs and could increase the price of energy on millions of American families and small businesses. The legislation prevents the Obama Administration from shutting down coal-fired power plants and American coal mines with government red-tape, which will raise unemployment, slow economic growth and increase energy costs.
Yesterday, the House Natural Resources Committee released a report, “President Obama’s Covert and Unorthodox Efforts to Impose New Regulation on Coal Mining and Destroy American Jobs,” detailing information uncovered in its more than 18-month ongoing investigation into the Obama Administration’s rewrite of a coal production regulation, the 2008 Stream Buffer Zone Rule. The Stop the War on Coal Act includes Rep. Bill Johnson’s (OH-06) bipartisan, Coal Miner Employment and Domestic Energy Infrastructure Protection Act, which prohibits the Secretary of the Interior from issuing new rules or regulations that will adversely impact mining jobs and our economy.
“President Obama has spent his entire term waging a regulatory war of red-tape and government mandates on coal miners, coal jobs and the millions of people who rely on low-cost coal-fired electricity. Just one of this Administration’s most egregious regulatory attacks on American coal production will destroy thousands of jobs and inflict economic harm on over twenty other states.” said Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04). “Without the passage of the Stop the War on Coal Act, those job losses and thousands of others will become reality for hardworking coal miners and their families across the country as a record number of coal plants will be forced to close over the coming years.”
“Today, with bipartisan support, the House of Representatives took an important step forward in stopping one of President Obama’s most economically destructive policies with the passage of the Stop the War on Coal Act. President Obama’s war on coal is real and it is already costing jobs. Just this week, Alpha Natural Resources announced that it is laying off 1,200 workers in three states. These layoffs come just weeks after Murray Energy announced that it would be closing its mine in Brilliant, Ohio putting more hardworking miners in the unemployment lines. Both companies cite excessive government overregulation as the main reason for these layoffs.” said Rep. Bill Johnson (OH-06). “The Stop the War on Coal Act is common sense legislation that protects coal jobs from these destructive regulations that have put the heavy boot of an out of control federal regulatory bureaucracy on the neck of the coal industry. Protecting America’s coal industry and the jobs that go with it is part of the a true ‘all of the above’ approach to energy production that creates jobs, lowers energy prices, and takes America one step closer to energy independence. Coal is critical to powering America, and I will always fight to END President Obama’s assault on hardworking Americans who work in the coal industry and the many businesses that depend upon the reliable, cost effective energy that coal provides.”
The Stop the War on Coal Act of 2012 includes the following bills:
- H.R. 3409, the Coal Miner Employment and Domestic Energy Infrastructure Protection Act
- H.R. 910, Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011
- H.R. 2401, Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act of 2011
- H.R. 2273, Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act
- H.R. 2018, Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011
Congressmen Ed Whitfield (R-Kent.) and Morgan Griffith (R-Va.) write in today’s Washington Examiner on Obama’s efforts to shut down coal use in the United States while subsidizing China’s coal-powered energy industry.
They write, in part:
Last week, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a hearing on the Accountability in Grants Act, which would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from awarding grants under Section 103 of the Clean Air Act for foreign projects. Since 2001, the EPA has awarded grants to foreign recipients totaling more than $100 million. In many instances, these taxpayer-funded grants help foreign companies at the expense of domestic ones.
On the list of recently awarded grants, one is especially troubling to us — EPA’s grant to the China Coal Information Institute for a “Technical Assessment of Coal Mine Gas Recovery and Utilization in China.”
Taxpayers may wonder why the EPA is funding coal projects abroad, and in China no less, while simultaneously spewing regulations that are helping to destroy coal mining here at home.
Speaking last night on the first anniversary of the Solyndra bankruptcy, Obama offered more of the same failed policies, demanding more taxpayer cash to bail out the failing wind and solar companies that are pumping their taxpayer-provided profits into his campaign.
Obama praised the decline in foreign oil imports since he was inaugurated, but failed to point out it was only because the Obama recession has eviscerated demand for energy. Under Obama’s oppressive regulatory regime, hydrocarbon development on federal lands has plunged. While development on private lands is growing thanks to the clean, safe, 60-year-old technology of hydraulic fracturing, Obama has vowed to target “fracking” for eradication if re-elected, killing what little economic growth we have seen under his presidency.
Obama also failed to voice support for the Keystone jobs pipeline, a project supported by the vast majority of Americans. American Tradition Partnership delivered 150,000 signatures to Obama’s State Department last month in support of the project, but Obama has chosen a path that kills American jobs and benefits Communist China.
And this morning we receive news that for the 43rd straight month of Obama’s 43-month presidency, our United States have failed to create enough jobs to restore American prosperity. This is a direct result of Obama’s virulent demonization of capitalism and his reckless EPA’s use of regulatory declarations to lash out at and attack American employers. Job creators will not invest in a nation where the head of state attacks employment activity and uses his unilateral power to invent law on his own to enact needless and punitive regulations intended to fulfill a radical leftist agenda.
American Tradition Partnership has a better idea and a better plan.
Remove taxpayer bailout for failing wind and solar corporations and have them compete on the same terms as traditional, proven energy sources.
Allow Americans, and job creators, access to affordable, reliable energy by repealing Expensive Energy Mandates requiring utilities to purchase more expensive, but politically-connected, wind and solar experimental energy.
Allow the development of hydrocarbon and other resources on federal lands, and stop the anti-science, anti-progress attacks on safe, clean hydraulic fracturing that had states like North Dakota and Texas creating jobs while other states plunge into recession.
And, working with Senator Rand Paul, pass the REINS Act, which requires any major federal regulation costing more than $100 million to be approved by Congress before it may be enacted — stopping the dangerous practice of radical politicians and unaccountable bureaucrats using the power of regulatory fiat to enact laws that could not pass in an elected, democratic body because they are too dangerous and destructive to our nation. Laws should be made by elected lawmakers, not political activists with a government employee badge.
Barack Obama’s radical leftist assault on our energy economy has left behind a damaged and broken nation. America cannot create jobs and families struggle to pay the utility bills while Obama’s cronies in corporations like Solyndra pocket billions of taxpayer dollars.
Economic peace and prosperity will not come until we end Obama’s war on the United States must end and we stop Gang Green’s hostile occupation of our lawmaking bodies. American Tradition Partnership is leading that fight, and we will win.
American Tradition Partnership and 63 other organizations have signed a letter to Congress urging them to let a special interest bailout to wind corporations expire. The letter was organized by Americans for Prosperity
September 6, 2012
Dear United States Senators and Representatives:
The principal federal support for wind energy, the so-called Production Tax Credit (PTC), is scheduled to expire at the end of this year. The undersigned organizations and the millions of Americans we represent stand opposed to extending the wind PTC. This special provision continues the deplorable practice of using the tax code to favor certain groups over others.
Whenever the government protects a particular industry, as it has with wind energy production, the industry tends to remain dependent on it. As Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman noted, “The infant industry argument is a smoke screen. The so-called infants never grow up.” The wind PTC, like other green energy incentives, is a prime case in point. The PTC was created in 1992 to get the wind industry off the ground. Yet 20 years later, we have little to show for it. We’re still providing a $5 billion special tax break each year for an industry that supplies just over 2% of our power.
If a new technology truly has worthwhile benefits for American consumers such as lower cost, higher efficiency, or environmental benefits, then that technology will demonstrate its value by competing in the open market for consumers’ dollars—not by living off of special provisions in the tax code. American consumers—not Washington lawmakers—should decide the future of American energy.
It is time to end special tax provisions that distort the energy market and increase energy prices. We urge you to let the wasteful wind PTC expire as planned at the end of the year.
American Tradition Partnership
And 63 other conservative and free market organizations
Join ATP, Stop Gang Green!
American Tradition Partnership (ATP) is a no-compromise grassroots organization dedicated to fighting the radical environmentalist agenda. We support responsible development of natural resources and rational land use and management policies. Only together can we protect access, private property rights, and affordable energy for all Americans!