Environment
11:53 am
Tue June 26, 2012

Federal Appeals Court Upholds EPA Air Pollution Rules

A federal court of appeals has ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency can regulate carbon emissions from vehicles and power plants. The court also upheld the agency’s scientific determination that greenhouse gases pose a danger to human health.

A number of utility companies and states signed onto the case as interveners, arguing against the EPA’s rules. Kentucky and Indiana were among them, arguing that the EPA’s findings weren’t based in science and would be burdensome to the industries. Here's a link to the decision, posted by Andrew Revkin of the New York Times.

Today’s ruling means the EPA can move forward with its rules to limit carbon pollution. So far, I haven’t seen any releases from the industry groups which opposed the rules, but environmental groups have been quick to weigh in on the ruling.

Michael Brune, Sierra Club:

Carbon pollution is dangerous to our planet and our health. The Environmental Protection Agency has the right and the duty to keep our communities healthy and now the path is clear for them to curb this dangerous pollution, which threatens our families and planet. We applaud the court’s decision and stand with the EPA as they continue to fight for the health of American families.

Howard Fox, Earthjustice:

Polluting industries such as big coal and big oil oppose action to limit climate change, refusing to modernize and resisting newer technologies. This case underscores these industries’ dogged resistance to safeguards designed to protect the public’s health and the environment. Notably, the automobile industry did not join these misguided challenges, but instead opposed these big industrial polluters’ efforts to overturn the standards that apply to cars.

David Doniger, Natural Resources Defense Fund:

This is a huge victory for our children's future. These rulings clear the way for EPA to keep moving forward under the Clean Air Act to limit carbon pollution from motor vehicles, new power plants, and other big industrial sources.

I have calls in to industry groups and the Kentucky Attorney General’s office.