What’s this all about?

The Bush administration plans to announce as early as next week a goal of stabilizing carbon dioxide levels in the global atmosphere at 450 parts per million by the year 2106, congressional and non-government sources told Platts Wednesday.

Such an announcement, if true, might lead to the establishment of new regulatory policies — either voluntary or mandatory — for the power sector and other sources of CO2 emissions.

But a high-ranking source at the White House Council on Environmental Quality rejected the suggestion, saying the administration has no plans to unveil any new climate-change policies.

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Also this, from EE News (sub.):

President Bush’s top environmental adviser urged reporters today to "stay tuned" for new U.S. climate change policies and refused to tamp down speculation that major new proposals may be coming before Bush leaves office in January 2009.

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Both these come via Roger.

As Coby points out in the thread below, the goal (450ppb by 2106) makes no sense. If atmospheric concentrations of CO2 rise above 450ppb — as virtually everyone expects them to — they will take centuries to sink back down again (absent some sort of high-tech widget that sucks CO2 directly from the air).

So if you really want to stabilize at 450ppb, that means never going above 450 ppb, and that in turn means cutting emissions by 60-80%, and soon. I highly doubt that’s what the Bush folks have in mind.

Anyway, it’s starting to seem like some sort of policy announcement is in the offing. Like the man said, stay tuned.