2007/04/03

EPA Told To Do Its Job

One half of the most pernicious circular argument in recent memory fell apart yesterday when the Supreme Court ruled in Massachusetts v. EPA that the agency has both the authority and the mandate to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

This is great news for California. Between the auto industry and the feds, our state has been stymied in its efforts to regulate greenhouse gases as pollutants. On the one hand, the auto industry has argued in its own suit against California that only the federal government has the authority to regulate anything that might affect fuel economy. And then, on the other hand, the EPA has argued that it lacks that same authority because greenhouse gases are not covered by the Clean Air Act--Catch-22.

Well, the Supreme Court put a 5 to 4 stake through the second half of those arguments, not only instructing EPA to exercise the oversight required by the Clean Air Act, but lending support to California's adoption of it's own stricter standards. Now we should finally see some movement on the issue of getting Big Auto's fuel economy case tossed out of the court system. That case is currently on hold in the Federal Circuit pending the outcome of Massachusetts v. EPA.

8 Comments:

Ah, Froggie, that's my post today too. It's a huge step in the right direction.

The four dissenting Justices claimed that the Plaintiffs should not have been heard. They said the states did not meet a 3-part definition that lets a plaintiff stand: that it had suffered a “concrete and particularized injury,” that the injury was “fairly traceable to the defendant” and that a favorable decision would be likely to “redress that injury.”

The court is so politicized right now, it amazes me when a decision like this comes out!
Diva... Yeah I saw that bit about the plaintiff's standing, and frankly it doesn't hold water. The mere fact that California has had stricter standards for 30 years, with Federal approval, and that they have had a demonstrable positive effect of our air shoots the second and third parts of Robert's minority opinion in the foot.

As for the decision, I'm not really surprised. It's not uncommon for members of the court, Scalia aside, to move to the center and maintain some balance.
They actually sited "The Clean Air Act"? That piece of BS this adm shoved fwd that turned out to be less restrictive than the current rules at the time? The nerve! ~~ D.K.
I have to admit that Scalia surprises me sometimes too.
I'm excited by this one myself. It's a good day to be an environmentalist. Of all the agencies Bush has destroyed, this is the one that pissed me off the most.
This is good news which is hard to believe. Finally something positive.
D.K... I think so. In fact, they referenced it specifically in addressing the weakness of Bu$hCo's arguments.

Sumo... Me too, but not usually in a good way.
Libby, Mary... And then just as we congratulate ourselves on this, Bush does a recess appointment of a guy whose dead set on making sure clean air regulations are never enacted. Sheesh!

Oh well... Go California!

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