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EPA grabs new powers

City A.M. Reporter
THE Environmental Protection Agency yesterday cleared the way for regulation of greenhouse gases without new laws passed by Congress, reflecting President Barack Obama&rsquo;s commitment to act on climate change at the Copenhagen summit.<br /><br />The EPA ruling that greenhouse gases endanger human health, widely expected after it issued a preliminary finding earlier this year, will allow the agency to regulate planet-warming gases even without legislation in Congress.<br /><br />The agency could begin to make rules as soon as next year to regulate emissions from vehicle exhausts, power utilities and heavy industry under existing laws.<br /><br />Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress will still pursue legislation in Congress, which has been slow to act. But the EPA move gave a timely push to the President&rsquo;s aims of securing short-term limits to harmful emissions. It was expected to inject some optimism into the two-week United Nations meeting in Copenhagen, which Obama is due to attend next week.