Presentation of greenhouse gas emissions not fair

Environmentally Challenged: By Brian Troutman

So I got an email about the EPA's new Greenhouse gas database and decided to check it out. Problem is -- I have no idea what any of it means.

The data shared, all from 2010, represents greenhouse gas emission in metric tons. In press a release issued on January 11, the EPA said the data "provides a critical tool for businesses and other innovators to find cost and fuel-saving efficiencies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and foster technologies to protect public health and the environment."

But how much is too much?

I asked this question of the EPA on Sunday and as I type, I have not gotten a response. Obviously, no matter what you do, you will probably always have some sort of emission. What's safe? What companies are running dangerously high? How much is too much?

For example, the Cross Generating Station in Pineville, S.C., according to the EPA's data, had more greenhouse gas emissions in 2010 than any other location in the state -- 14,625,200 metric tons. But is this expected based on the service the power generating station provides? If they should be lower, where should they be.

I am not taking sides in the global warming debate, but I do believe that all the gas released into the air can't be a good thing. I know there is a give and take. For example, more bears in the woods means more bear poop. So obviously, the demand for more products that a company produces will mean more waste.

That being said, I'm not sure it is fair for the EPA to release such data without also making public what companies are in need of drastically making change.

If you have answers to any of my questions above, please leave them in the comment section below. If I get a response from the EPA, I will be sure to publish as soon as possible.

* Environmentally Challenged is the blog of ABC News 4 New Media Manager Brian Troutman. It is op-ed in nature and provides Troutman's thoughts on the environment, environmental issues and conservation. If you would like to reach Troutman, you can do so by email at