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EPA to Eliminate Carbon Dioxide in Soft Drinks

WASHINGTON, DC (BS) - In the latest move to control the emission of the greenhouse gas Carbon Dioxide, the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it will soon hold hearings on a sweeping set of proposed regulations to phase out the use of CO2 in the soft drink industry.

EPA spokeswoman Adora Andy told an ad hoc press gathering Tuesday morning that EPA research has found dangerous levels of CO2 use in common soft drinks, and that the agency will be moving swiftly to meet this challenge. "Of all non-industrial applications, soft drinks by far pose the greatest risk to our environment and the ozone layer. We therefore aim to move agressively to phase out the use of these chemicals with a goal of eliminating them entirely by 2013."

Overall sales of soft drinks have been falling for the past six consecutive years, fueled by the resurgence of coffee products and by the emergence of energy drinks and bottled water. Still, industry estimates place American per-capita consumption of cabonated soft drinks at over 700 eight-ounce servings annually (down from a peak of 864 servings in 1998). The United States still leads the world in sales and consumption of these beverages, according to Beverage Digest.

Industry spokemen were caught off guard by today's announcement and had no immediately comments. Off the record, many reportedly were "dumb-founded" at the news and predicted that this could bring down the entire beverage sector, should the proposed regulations come into force.

At the White House, Mrs. Obama was said to be "overjoyed" over the prospect that soft drinks might soon be phased out, as this would be a boon to her Let's Move campaign to help parents deal with the national health crisis of childhood obesity. Spokeswoman Kristina Schake said that First Lady was elated at the news, as the idea of combining the benefits of healthier kids and the battle against climate change was almost too good to be true.

The EPA says that hearings will begin next week in Washington.

EPA is testing Chlorine or Cyanide Gas to replace Carbon Dioxide

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