EPA chief will decide whether to regulate greenhouse gases … next year

Climatic evidence notwithstanding, U.S. EPA chief Stephen Johnson would like to assure you that snoozers are not losers. On Friday, Johnson told a House special committee on global warming that he’s going to put off making up his mind about whether vehicle greenhouse-gas emissions should be regulated by his agency until late 2008. It’s all a matter of whether the emissions “endanger public health or welfare” — and endangerment is a “legal term of art” that needs more study, Johnson said. The Undecider also refused to inform the House when he might determine whether California is allowed to enforce vehicle-emissions standards stricter than those outlined by the feds. “We’re moving forward in a thoughtful, deliberative manner, looking at every appropriate option,” Johnson explained. Color the committee members unimpressed: “This is grossly unsatisfactory,” said Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) “This is like saying we’re going to have a meeting next year about getting Osama bin Laden.”