tv Today in Washington CSPAN December 8, 2009 6:00am-7:00am EST
institutions and other institutions affected by1 the crisis. among these were the money market mutual fund industry's. ies. we also established and extended special arrangements with other central banks to provide dollars to global funding markets as we found that disruptions in dollar-based markets abroad were spilling over into our markets. more recently, we put an important part to restart the market for asset that securities. -- for asset-backed securities. by working to revive these markets which allow banks to tap the broader securities market to finance their lending, we have helped banks make room on their balance sheets for new credit to industries and individuals. we support the overall
functioning of private credit markets and helped to lower interest rates on bonds, mortgages and the like. in all these efforts, our objective has not been to support specific financial institutions or markets for their own sake. rather, recognizing that a healthy economy needs well functioning financial markets, we have moved with a single aim of promoting economic recovery and economic opportunities. in that respect, our means and goals have been fully consistent in the traditional functions of a central bank with the mandate given to the federal reserve by the congress to promote price stability and maximum employment. in addition to easing monetary policy and acting to stabilize special markets, we have also acted our role to stimulate bank lending. we urged banks to continue lending to creditworthy
borrowers to the benefit of the economy and the banks and we recently provided guidelines to banks who were working constructively with troubled commercial real-estate loans. this spring, we led a coordinated examination of 19 of the country's largest banks it was an exercise formally known as the sthe stress test this assessment was designed to ensure that these banks which collectively hold about 2/3 of the assets in the u.s. banking system would remain well- capitalized and able to lend to creditworthy borrowers even if economic conditions turned into a worse than expected. the release of these assessment results in may provided sorely needed clarity about the bank's status. with a strong and personal banking system, many of these institutions have raise billions of dollars in new capital,
improving their ability to withstand future losses and to extend loans as the demand for credit recovers. meanwhile, we continued our efforts to help the customers of financial firms. we overhaul regulations protecting credit-card borrowers, users of overdraft protection plans, among others. in navigating to the crisis, the federal reserve has been aided by a regional/% structure established by the congress when agreed the palle reserve in 1913. the more than two-thirds of the business people, bankers, academics, and other leaders who serve on the boards of the 12 reserve banks and their 24 branches provide the legal insight into current economic and financial conditions that statistics alone cannot. thus, the structure of the federal reserve insurers that our policy making is informed not but despite a washington
perspective or wall street, but a main street perspective. our reserve banks and branches have deep roots in the nation's communities and do much good. they have assisted organization specializing in foreclosure mitigation and work with non- profit groups to help neighborhoods hit by high rates of foreclosures. they are much involved in financial and economic education, helping people to make better potential decisions and to better understand how the economy works. the federal reserve's actions in combination with other policy makers here and abroad have helped restore financial stability and pull the economy back from the brink. because of our programs, half automobile buyers have obtained loans that they would not have otherwise gotten very home buyers had secured mortgages in more sustainable terms and that would have. these improvements in credit
conditions are supporting a broader economic recovery. the scope and scale of our actions while necessary and helpful have left some money in -- some uneasy. asset purchases and lenin had caused to preserve balance sheet to more than doubled to less than $900 billion before the crisis began from $2.20 trillion today. unprecedented balance sheet expansion raised the third question --9d will but the resee actions lead to higher inflation down the road? the answer is no. depauw reserve is committed to keeping inflation low and will be able to do so. in the near term, elevated on employment and stable inflation expectations will keep inflation subdued however, as the recovery strengthens, the time will come when it is appropriate toq7ñ wih would drop the stimulus -- to
withdraw the economic activity. we have given careful thought where exit strategy. we're, but we have all the tools necessary to withdraw of monetary stimulus in a timely and effective way. our balance sheet is already beginning to adjust because improving financial conditions are leading to a substantially reduced use of our lending facility. our balance sheet will also shrink over time as the mortgage-backed securities and other assets we hold a mature or are repaid. even if harebells chief state's large, we will be able to raise our short-term interest rate and thus tighten financial situation. an important tool for adjusting monetary policy will be the authority granted to us by congress last year to pay bank interest on balance sheets but they hold with the federal reserve. when the time comes to raise short-term interest rates, and
tighten policy, we can do so by raising the rate that we offer banks that hold balances with us. banks will be unwilling to make overnight loans to each other at a rate lower than the rate they can learn ris' from the fed. the interest rate would pay on bank balances will set a pooflo. additional upward pressure on the short-term interest rates can be achieved by reducing the supply of funds the banks have to lend to each other. we have a number of tools to accomplish this through use of a short-term funding method known as reverse repurchase agreements, we can reduce the number of reserves held by the banking system. by paying the slightly higher rate of interest, we can also induce banks to lock up their balances in longer-term account with us, making those balances on available for lending in the overnight market. we always have the option of reducing the size of our balance sheet by selling some of our
securities on the open market. the most difficult challenge for the federal market committee will not be devising the technical means of unwinding monetary stimulus. it will be the challenge that faces all banks which is correctly judging the best time to tighten policy. monetary policy affects the economy with a lag, we'll need to base our decision on our best forecasts of how the economy will develop. we currently expect inflation to remain subdued for some time. it is also reassuring that longer-term inflation expectations remain stable. we will keep a close eye on inflation risk and will do whatever is necessary to meet our mandate on price stability and maximum employment. as we and others work to build on the progress already made for security is a state economic recovery, we must also continue
to address the weaknesses that led to the current crisis. our final question this afternoon is -- how can we avoid a similar crisis in the future? the sources of the crisis were extraordinarily complex and numerous, a fundamental cause was that many financial firms simply did not appreciate the risks they were taking. the risk management systems were inadequate and a capital and liquidity boppers insufficient. unfortunately, neither the firms or the regulators identified and remedied many of these weaknesses soon enough. all financial regulators, including the federal reserve, must undertakeña unsparing self assessment. s. we have moved to strengthen the oversight of banks working cooperatively with other agencies. we are toughening our regulations to help constrain excessive risk-taking and enhance the ability to sustain financial stress.
we have been among the leaders in international finance. we are implementing standards at home that require banking organizations to adopt compensation policies that link pay to the institutions' long- term plans. i mentioned the stress test. we are applying the lessons learned in that exercise to reorient our approach to this revision of large interconnected banking organizations that are critical to the stability of the financial system. we are taking a more macro- provincial approach, one that goes beyond the supervisors focus on individual institutions and scrutinizes the interrelationships among firms and markets to better anticipate possible sources of financial contagion. to do that, we're expanding our use of the kind of simultaneous and comparative cross-
examination is that we used to such good effect in scat. our ability to draw on a range of tools was essential to the success of the scat and a multi- disciplinary approach will be part of our policy in the future. we are complementing our traditional on-site examinations with and has offsites developed programs under which multidisciplinary teams will combine supervisory information and market-based indicators to indicate problems that may affect one or more banking institutions. regulators can do a great deal on their own to improve financial oversight, the congress also must act to see weaknesses in the financial system. they must address the very serious problem posed by firms that are perceived as perceivedtoo big to fail.
no firm by virtue of its size and complexity should be permitted to hold the financial system, the economy, or the american taxpayer hostage. to eliminate that possibility, a number of steps are required. first, all systemically important financial institutions should be subject to strong and comprehensive supervision on a consolidated or firm-wide basis. such institutions should be subject to tougher capital, liquidity, and risk than other firms to reduce their chances of killing and move their incentive to grow big. neither a itt -- neither a.i.g. or bear stearns should have been involved in this. that experience with their
broad market -- knowledge of the financial markets makes us well- suited to be the supervisor for non-banking institutions as well barrett ar. second colony systemically important institution does approach failure, government policy makers must have tools other than a bailout or shattering bankruptcy. the congress should create a new resolution urging analogous to the regime currently used for the fdic for failing banks that would put that the government to want them a troubled firm in a way that protect financial stability and that imposes losses on shareholders and creditors of the failed firm without cost to the taxpayer. imposing losses would help
address the yoo big to fail problem. -- tooo big to fail problem. third, a regulatory structure requires a better mechanism for monitoring and addressing emerging risk to the financial system as a whole. because of the size, diversity, and complexity of our financial system, that task may exceed the capacity of anyone financial regulatory agency. because a reserve supports the creation of a systemic oversight council made up of the principal financial regulators to identified developments that may pose systemic risk and recommend approach to dealing with them and to court made the response of its member agencies. to close, i will again note that in the fall last year, the united states indeed the world, confronted a financial crisis
of a magnitude unseen for generations. concerted actions by the federal reserve and other policy makers here and abroad helped to avoid the worst outcomes. nevertheless, the turmoil dealt a severe blow to our economy for which we only recently have begun to recover. the improvement of financial conditions this year and a resumption of growth over the summer offer the hope and expectation of continued recovery in the new year. significant head winds remain, including tight credit conditions and a weak job market. because reserve has been aggressive in its efforts to stabilize our financial system and support economic activity. at some point, we will need to unwind our accommodative policies to avoid higher inflation in the future. i'm, but we have both the tools and the commitment to make that adjustment when it is needed in a manner consistent with our mandate to foster employment and price stability.
in the meantime, financial firms must do a better job managing the risks of their businesses and regulators must complete a thorough overhaul of their supervision and the congress should move forward in making needed changes to our system of financial regulation to avoid a similar crisis in the future. in particular, we must solve the problem of too big to fail. we have come a long way from the darkest period of the crisis. we have some distance to go. in the midst of some of the toughest days in october, 2008, i said that i was confident that the american economy would emerge from this. with renewed vigor. i remain equally confident. thank you. [applause]
>> thank you very much, we have time for a few questions and i have some that have been submitted and you can submit others. the first question would be, any hints on where interest rates might go? [applause] >> well i can't go much further down. [laughter] [laughter] >> ok. [applause] [laughter] we will continue to look at the economy and update our outlook and look at financial conditions and moved from there. right now, we are still looking at the extended period, given that conditions remain low-rate utilization, subdued interest rates. that is where we are but we will look at the economy. there has been some signs of strength recently.
we will factor that and as we talk about this next week. >> d.c. any prospect of a double-dip recession? >> economic forecasting is very difficult we cannot get any guarantees either about that or for that matter a stronger recovery next year however, i think the most likely outcome is a moderate pace of recovery. there seems to be enough forces in play to sustain a recovery going into next year. at the same time, there are headwinds like tight credit and high unemployment which make a vigorous snap back seem less likely. we will keep following developments at adjusting policy appropriately. >> if your council recommendations had been placed at the time of lehman brothers, how would that have been resolved differently? would you have handled them differently if the council had been in place at that time? >> as far as the council is
concerned, the goal of the council would be to address systemic risks, emerging rest before they become so critical. a systemic council with a macro- provincial perspective would have done its good work well before we went down that path. by the time of the crisis, we were well beyond the point of arresting the risks before became apparent. what would admit a great deal of difference last fall was having the resolution -- i talked about. if we had been able to wind down that firm and others in a way that would have allowed them to fail would have avoided tax their intervention but not have had all the ramifications in the economic system.
>> you have any views on the legislation by congressman ron paul about auditing the federal reserve? i assume you're you're not in support of that. [laughter] mya >> my views are known. the so-called audit the fed bill -- the word of it is used by most people in this room as hubs had intended to do with financial books. it has do with looking at numbers and reports and statements and so on. that is not what this is about are the federal reserve fully agrees that congress should have all aspect to our transactions and operations and controls. the congress has every right to make sure that that that is using the taxpayer money effectively and safely as we are. in this particular context, the word of it means a policy review. if this bill were passed, it would repeal an exemption passed
by congress in 1978 which protect monetary policy from an immediate review by the general accountability office to assess whether the policy was the right policy or not. every other aspect of our policy making, are supervision, everything else is subject to gao review. all of our financial books are open to the congress and the g a zero. we are concerned about the independence and the integrity of the policies. our concern is that we would take action on monetary policy that would be unpopular in some quarters and that congress, by ordering an audit of that action, would be signaling strongly to the markets and the public that they disapprove and were putting pressure on the fed not to take that action fo we n. we think this would be bad for markets and inflation
expectations and that for the dollar. >> do you expect the federal reserve will get all the money back it has injected in the system in terms of loans to corporations? >> yes, i do. i could we are in very good shape. in fact, the actions we took will help us get back the money. we will show the taxpayer a significant extra income. >> when you are minding your own business at princeton, did you ever have any second thoughts about coming to washington? [laughter] >> [laughter] >> it has been an interesting experience overall -- [laughter] it was once said that economics should aspire to be as useful as dentistry. [laughter]
what he meant was that economics is not a subject which should be studied in ivory towers. to be applied in a way that should help the broader economy and help the public and make things better. it was my objective to bring my knowledge, my research arm the great depression and the financial markets on the economy to do the best i could to bring that to the actual policy making a report in that respect, i do not regret coming to washington very >> your academic research, is there any big u.s. lard in washington that would say your research is wrong or right? was the most important thing you have learned in washingtons? >> i studied the great depression of the 1930's. the world is more complicated. financial institutions are more complicated. the whole structure and nature
of our financial markets are different and more interconnected and more complex than was the case in the 1930's. nevertheless, the basic lessons of the 1930's still apply here. the first was that the federal reserve in 1930 made the mistake of being entirely passive and monetary policy. they took no action. what happened was that as the banks failed, the money supply contracted and the economy went through a severe 10% per year deflationary, falling prices which made it very attractive to invest and gay people strong incentives to delay purchases. -- and gay people strong incentives to delay part -- delay purchases. the lesson was to provide support to monetary policy for the economy grew we took that lesson and have been aggressive in cutting interest rates and making sure that we stay away from deflationary cycle and make
sure we're providing the necessary monetary support for the economy. the second major lesson of the great depression was not to let the financial system collapse. in the 1930's, many people think about the depression as being a result of the 1929 stock market crash. between 1929 and late 1931, the downturn in the economy and the stock-market was not that different from other recessions. it was not that different from the beginning of this recession. what changed this was the intense financial crisis which gathered steam in 1931, particularly the collapse of large banks in central europe in may of 1931 which spread around the world for the collapse of the financial system which destroy credit creation and created huge amounts of financial instability was the major factor that drove the worldj# economy into a deep depression between 1931 and
1933. it was the stabilization of the banking system with a bank holiday in 1933 and leaving the gold standard which allowed monetary policy to become more supportive in 1933. those for the measures that caused the u.s. economy to come back. in that respect, our actions to prevent the collapse of the financial system, including the entire global system, was essential to avoiding a similar economic outcome in this decade. a big problem was that we did not have all the tools we needed to wind down ailing firms and a safe way that would not affect the broader economy that is why it is essential for congress to give tools, not to the federal reserve, but to the government in general to avoid these types of situations in the future while not creating a moral hazard and other problems
associated with preventing the failure of large firms. >> we have to question from the organs. -- from the audience >> >> i want to assure the audience that i am not [unintelligible] >> one question. >> i have one question. [laughter] as you know, mr. chairman, [unintelligible] there is a meeting next year. i am prepared to take on the federal reserve on the systemic risk issue. i asked you to participate in that session.
there were key questions related to the role of the federal reserve in the current financial crisis. this deals with bear stearns, lehman brothers, and a.i.g.. why did the federal reserve sabin brothers? who made that decision? why was the decision made not to say lehman brothers and who made that decision? what were the respective roles of treasury? [laughter] the reserve bank of york -- of new york. why did the federal reserve say i g n two made that decision? [laughter] in my paper, i have tried to
respond to [unintelligible] >> could you repeat that question? [laughter] [applause] >> i thought you bet he was some kind of plant, right? [laughter] governor bremer, the federal reserve and the treasury in consultation, we spoke to the president and congress whenever possible, attempted to avoid the systemic collapse of our financial markets, our financial system. we were extremely concerned that the collapse of these large firms in a disorderly way would have very adverse affect on the broader economy and the broader global economy. the evidence is baldwin brothers is that we were right, that the
collapse of these firms is very destructive -- the evidence is, with lehman brothers, is that we were right, the collapse of these firms is very destructive. the reason we did not save lehman brothers was but a conscious choice. given the limited powers that we had, the only power we had was the lending authority against collateral, which were unable and did not have the tools. it was not a conscious choice. it was something we could not do within our legal authority. if we are going to avoid this crisis in the future and avoid the very unpopular bailout that were so did with it, we have to have a better system. congress is working on that. i very much support that approach. >> let me ask one more question. what is the best thing about being chairman of the batteries are bored?
[laughter] >> i get to go to the security lines at the airport. [laughter] >> much more quickly and i can take along 3 ounces of fluid in the 12. [laughter] [applause] >> on behalf of the economic club of washington, we want to give you this antique maps of the district of columbia and we know it might violate the $20 limit on gifts that you have but not by much. [laughter] [applause] >> we are adjourned. thank you very much. [no audio]
c-span3 c-span[captioning perfoy national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> more than $300 billion has been committed to states from the stimulus package. more than one a reported $5 billion has been paid out for state projects. for more information, go to c- span.org/stimulus. that is all that." /stimulus. american icons, three original documentaries from cspan are now available on dvd. that is a unique journey to the icons of the three branches of american government. see the exquisite detail of the supreme court through the eyes of the justices. go beyond the belt ropes of public tours into the rarely
seen spaces of the white house. , america's most famous home and explore the history of the capital, one of america's most symbolic structures. american icons, a three-disc dvd set. it is $24.95 plus shipping and handling. order online at c-span.org /store. >> the commander of u.s. forces in afghanistan, general stanley mcchrystal and the u.s. ambassador to a afghanistan, carl eikenberry will testify on afghanistan strategy today. also live on c-span 3, their testimony before the senate armed services committee at 1:30 p.m., eastern. both hearings are also on line at c-span.org. later in the week, they will take questions from the members of the house and senate foreign
relations committee. >> greenhouse gas emissions pose a threat to public health, according to police said jackson, the head of the environmental protection agency. that clears the way for the epa to regulate certain emissions even if congress doesn't act. this is about half an hour. . >> we have spent decades
studying greenhouse gas solution and climate change. scientists in the united states and around the world have tracked in the last century and in particular the last three decades alarming increases in the amount of greenhouse gases in our skies. that increase is deteriorating the natural balance in our atmosphere and changing our climate. there have and will continue to be debates about how quickly climate change will happen if we fail to act. the overwhelming amount of scientific study shows that the threat is real. polar icecaps are crumbling into the oceans, changing migratory patterns of animals and broader range is for deadly diseases, historic drought, more powerful storms, and disappearing coastlines are the symptoms. after decades of this evidence, climate change has now become a household issue.
parents across the united states and around the world are concerned for their children and grandchildren. businesses are investing billions of dollars to cut greenhouse gases. military planners are predicting hotspots of stability instability and conflict are they know that if we do not act to reduce greenhouse gases, the planet will lead to the next generation will be a very different place than the one we know today. in 2007, the united states supreme court handed down perhaps the most significant decision ever reached in environmental law. the court ruled that the clean air act, the landmark 1970 law aimed at protecting our air is within to include crab house -- greenhouse gas solutions for that verdict echoed what many scientists, policymakers, and concerns the -- concerned
sublicense. there is no longer need for delay. regrettably, there was continued the leg. this administration will not ignore signs or below any longer. we will not avoid the responsibility we owe to our children and our grandchildren. today, i am proud to announce that the epa has finalized the and age when finding on greenhouse gas solutions and is now authorized and obligated to make reasonable efforts to reduce greenhouse pollutants under the clean air act. this long overdue finding cements the 2009 place in history as the year when the united states government began seriously addressing the challenge of greenhouse gas solutions and seizing the opportunity of clean air energy reform. in less than 11 months, we have done more to promote clean air and has happened in the last eight years. earlier this year, the epa established the country's first
nationwide greenhouse gas emissions recording system. the united states will work with the epa monitors beginning in 2011, largely matters -- large emitters will cooperate so we contract greenhouse gas emissions over time. this will bring to light opportunities to jump-start private investment and energy efficiency and new technologies and project. products. it does all this a common-sense way, without putting a burden on small businesses or other critical sectors of our economy. through the recovery act and the support of strong clean energy reform legislation, president obama has led the way in cutting greenhouse gas pollutants and
cutting our reliance on foreign oil today is endangerment finding provides legal foundation for finalizing the recently proposed clean cars program. that program was developed in collaboration with the american auto industry and other stakeholders and contains the nation's first-ever limits on greenhouse gas emissions from american vehicles. starting next spring, large- emitting facilities will be required to incorporate the best available methods for controlling greenhouse gas emissions when they plan to construct or expand operations. these are reasonable, common- sense steps that will allow us to do what the clean air act does best, reduce emissions for better health, better technology for a better economy and protect the unborn and for a better future. today's announcement and these efforts are designed to
complement comprehensive clean energy reform. we look forward to working with congress to get a bill to the president's desk and to implement that bill once it has been signed. we know that skeptics have and will continue to try to throw doubt about the size. it is no wonder that many people are confused. raising doubts, even in the face of overwhelming evidence, is a tactic that has been used by defenders of the status quo for years. those tactics have only served to delay and distract from the real work ahead. we to grow our clean air economy and free ourselves from foreign uwoil that endangers our securiy and our economy is time that we let the science speak for itself. we relied on decades of sound, peer-reviewed, extensively
evaluated scientific data. that data came from a round the world and from our own u.s. scientists. today's action is a step toward ensuring pragmatic solutions to the problem of climate change. it is a step toward innovation, investment, and implementation of technologies that reduce harmful emissions. it is a step toward green jobs, reducing dependence on foreign oil, and a better future for our children. it also means that we arrive at the climate talks in copenhagen with a clear demonstration of our commitment in facing the global challenge. we hope that today's announcement serves as another incentive for far reaching accords in our meetings this week. in taking action now, and recognizing this thread now, we joined the hundreds of other countries, thousands of leading scientists, tens of thousands of innovative entrepreneurs and
private companies, millions of americans, and billions of global citizens who have seen the overwhelming evidence and called for action on climate change. thank you. [applause] >> we will open it up for questions. we'll take them one at a time. >> you said there will be available technology next year. if you can clarify that statement. my understanding under the tailoring role that the epa does not preempt state action.
many states have up to 250 ton limits under the title five provisions. will that mean that those states can or must regulate at that threshold? >> your question was a legal one. i cannot do the whole analysis here. what i will say about state action is that it has been critical to get us where we are so far it will work closely with states. states are a key player as the legislative discussion continues. my point earlier was in making sure that the american people understand that we at the epa believe there are ways to sensible move forward on regulation. what we have done is primarily de-regulatory. we gave a clear signal to larger in matters. -- larger emitters.
>> congressional republicans passed that you delay the announcement today due to the hacked e-mails that were discovered. >> i did not delay it because there is nothing in that pact e- mails that undermines the science on which this decision is based. when you see the decision and i hope you will review it you will see that the response to comments include responses to questions about the underlying sides which are being raised again with respect to this particular issue this issue has not raised new scientific questions which are not addressed already in this finding. >> can you use these to bolster your argument? >> the thing to talk about is the amount of science that is out there. many organizations have been studying this data for years. it is important to understand
and conceptualize the e-mails a little bit. that is one data set. they all reached a consensus that climate change is happening and is caused by man-made emissions. we look at that and look at the drought, the flooding, the changes in diseases, the changes in migratory habits, the changes in our water cycle and climate that we now find affecting the health of the world. >> you said that next spring, a large emitting facilities will have the best controls. would you propose a new rule? >> the epa has proposed a new rule that says that large facilities that he met over 25,000 tons per year will be subject to the requirements under the clean air act.
the premise is that once you know you have pollution and once you know it is endangering human health and welfare, the epa must act. it must compel the sill is to use the best technologies out there. it was part of people to realize that technology evolves over time. my belief is that anything done in the future under the clean air act, and we have not proposed what those technologies look like, have to be done with an eye toward what is happening congress but more importantly, the development of technology. we cannot make people implement a technology that does not yet exist. 9-the work that has to be dones that the epa would have to put out technical guidance to tell a facility but that would mean and work with states. to implement those requirements. >> do you still believe that legislative solution is better
than this? >> i absolutely do. i think legislation is the best way to move our economy poured on clean energy. the reason is legislation is comprehensive. can the economy-wide. it can transition of us. it can give this is absolute certainty that we are on the road to clean energy and that the investments that they want to make it are in retrofits or technology development and demonstration and deployment will be profitable. they will know that this country is on the road. that being said, i do not believe this is an either or proposition. i see this that the clean air act can promote legislative efforts and a clean car rolls we propose is an excellent example of that. >> several environmental groups
have petitioned the natural ambient air quality requirements. what are your plans with that petition? >> nothing in today's action requires any regulatory action. that is an important distinction. we will certainly review the petition and respond appropriately. i have never believed that setting a national ambient air quality standard for greenhouse gases was advisable. that being said, we need to look at the petition. i don't know there is anything in there that would change my view but we will do that. >> [unintelligible] >> the action today is the basis for the cars rule.
it is not a choice to act under the clean air act are it actions would be warranted when we talk about addressing public health and welfare. the epa continues its work on the regulatory front. i want to emphasize that i believe it is not either or. i do not want anyone to believe that because we continue our work, i do not stem from in my belief that we need legislation. that being said, i also believe firmly that there are things that the clean air act allows us to do, clean cars, he missions reporting, that we have already done they have paid the way for this country to move smartly, sensibly, in a common-sense way toward a clean energy future. >> is it your intent that this will push members of congress who are on the plans to get onto your side and work for a climate
an energy bill? >> no, my intention is to follow up on an almost 3-year-old requirement from the united states supreme court that the epa address climate pollution and address screen as gases that the clean air act allows us to do so. as you know, this engagement fighting has been worked on for years,l predating the obama administration. i would like to release the size that some of the epa employees worked on so diligently to reduce the questions but in many people's minds to an answer about public health and welfare. this year, 2009, the united states government is saying once and for all that we are in the clean energy and climate arena. we will act in respect to pollution.
>> these companies will have to start reporting next year? when will you enacted the rolls up to -- when will you enact the rules for stationary sources to cut their emissions? >> i don't know perry will talk about how we believe the clean air act will apply. >> will you fast-track these rules? >> it know, we have a plan to continue working. this is not an ending. we will continue to work under the clean air act. that is what we must now legally do with respect to this funding. we are compelled to address greenhouse gas pollution. >> you say you want to complement what congress is doing but the senate leadership says they do not plan to get around to a boat on climate
change bill until early spring. is it possible that the epa could issue these rules before they get around to the climate change bill? >> i certainly have heard that the leadership in the senate say they do intend to move to legislation. we see very promising engagement by a number of senators. when they turn to those rules, they will have the benefit of an emissions reporting inventory that has rules that the epa has already adopted. we did that under different authority. this is not an either or. i have not laid out a time line. i respect and will make sure that we are watching and working with congress in their legislative efforts. they are independent in time library we don't have it, that looks at the senate.
i certainly hope to see them move. >> [unintelligible] >> we need the best available technology. >> [unintelligible] >> the vast body of scientific evidence not only remains unavailable, it has grown stronger. it points to one conclusion, that grain has crevasses -- that greenhouse gases are increasing an unprecedented rate and are affecting our environment and threatening our help. the findings i make today are
firmly grounded in science that comes from independent lines of evidence, including by united states scientists. all that work has been publicly commented on to varying degrees. if you need one more point of certainty, it is that critics who have been opposing climate change and scientists who disagree, whether they oppose clinton's policy or not with scientific findings, commented during the public comment p eriod, all that material is in the record. all of it has been responded to in making this far and agree that is why i stand certain that the science has been thoroughly evaluated, that the underlying science and the e-mails and the best body is not addressed in any one of those e-mails and remains the same we have to continually look at the science. >> [unintelligible]
obq>> we have lots of data frome cru. there are several other data sets that have been of value it by hundreds of scientists. all of that work is and thousands of different articles. that has all been peer-reviewed. you are talking about one tiny threat of thousands of brett's of evidence and data and scientific information that leads me to stand here today, confident that there is no reason to the leg. in fact, we can move forward with work we have planned. >> will take one last question from the fund. are we ready on the phone? >> you said you're not putting out a time line to enact rules
on emissions but could you get an idea of when you think early it would be that the epa could propose rules for existing power plants. why are you showing this role now as opposed to doing it concurrent with the vehicle rolled back i am told that is the first time the epa has issued an engagement finding separate from the rule to pollute. >> i have no additional information on time lines. this is different. this was the subject. this finding was the subject of eight u.s. supreme court case. there has been much written. earlier this year, the epa released the engagement finding that was put together under the bush administration and sent over to the white house and never opened. in my mind, to show the american people that the epa's on the job, it was important for our
credibility and the trust of the american people that we would put this information out for public comment and act on in an expeditious fashion we would keep the ball moving. it is my hope that as this moves to congress, we need to keep the pace on the ball. 90. -- thank you. thanks, everybody. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> president barack obama is attending a u.n. summit on climate change in denmark on december 80. -- december 18.