Judge requires feds to submit climate research plan, impact assessment

The Bushies are big stinkin’ lawbreakers, a federal judge ruled this week. A 1990 federal law requires the U.S. government to provide a scientific report every four years on climate change and its effects on the environment, the economy, and public health, but the Bush administration chose to ignore its 2004 deadline for such a report. Green groups sued, and U.S. District Judge Saundra Armstrong ruled in favor of timeliness, demanding the required impact assessment by May 31, 2008. The laggardly administration also owes a plan to guide federal climate research, which is due every three years and hasn’t been submitted since 2003; Armstrong asked that it be submitted by March 1, 2008. To the Bushies’ argument that they determined “only recently that the initiation of a process to revise the research plan has become necessary and advisable,” Armstrong responded, “News flash: you’re not above the law.” In legalese, of course.