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CATF statement on opposition to Supreme Court review of American Lung Ass’n v. EPA

August 5, 2021

Statement of Clean Air Task Force on today’s filed brief in opposition to Supreme Court review of the ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals, American Lung Ass’n v. EPA, 985 F.3d 914 (D.C. Cir. 2021), finding the Trump Administration had unlawfully limited its own ability to regulate serious climate pollution in the 2019 Affordable Clean Energy Rule (ACE Rule).

Sixteen public health, environmental, and clean energy organizations today filed a brief in the U.S. Supreme Court opposing review of the D.C. Circuit’s decision throwing out the Trump ACE rule. ACE was based on an extremely limited view of federal authority to regulate the significant amounts of climate-harming carbon dioxide emissions from the existing fleet of coal- and gas-fired power plants.  The court below found that view unlawful, and sent the rule back to EPA.  While the Biden Administration has pledged to work on this issue, U.S. EPA has not as yet issued a proposed replacement rule.

The brief filed today tells the Court that because there is no regulation currently in place, petitioners mining companies and coal states are premature in their requests and there is no active dispute for the Supreme Court to review.  The Supreme Court does not issue “advisory opinions” – directing the content of future rules by the Administration – but rather only reviews existing statutes, rules, and active disputes. Notably, no company that would be directly regulated by the now-defunct ACE rule has requested Supreme Court review of the lower court’s decision.

Clean Air Task Force lawyers Ann Weeks and James Duffy represent American Lung Association, American Public Health Association, Appalachian Mountain Club, Clean Air Council, Clean Wisconsin, Conservation Law Foundation, and the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy in the case.

CATF Contact: Ann Weeks, [email protected], 617-359-4077

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