Thursday, July 2, 2015

speed bump

Michigan v EPA  March 2015 Oral Arguments before the Supreme Court of the United States

The SCOTUS ruled 5 -4 the EPA failed to consider costs and remanded to lower court. 
Power plant regulation was found appropriate because the plants' emissions pose risks to public heath and the environment and because controls capable of reducing these emissions are available. 

 Regulation was found necessary because the these risks to public health and the environment have not been eliminated by existing Clean Air Act requirements. The D C Circuit court had upheld the EPA's refusal to consider costs in this decision (of whether regulation is appropriate and necessary). "Statutory context supports" that EPA was required "to conduct three studies, including one that reflects concern about cost", and EPA agreed "that the term appropriate and necessary must be interpreted in light of all three studies." The SCOTUS found "EPA must consider cost -- including cost of compliance -- before deciding whether regulation is appropriate and necessary. It will be up to the Agency (EPA) to decide how to account for cost."

: "No regulation is ‘appropriate’ if it does significantly more harm than good." -- Justice Scalia  {editorial note, this should be applied to neighborhoods around "Clean Fuel" projects, where Clean Fuel Creates Dirty Neighborhood}

""EPA expressed disappointment at the ruling but noted that the regulation “was issued more than three years ago [and] investments have been made and most plants are already well on their way to compliance.”
The Sierra Club agreed that the ruling couldn’t reverse decisions energy companies have already made to comply.
“Practically speaking, today’s decision won’t revive the fortunes of Big Coal or slow down our nation’s transition to clean energy,” said Mary Anne Hitt, director of Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign. “Most utilities have long since made decisions about how to meet the standard. Only a few dozen coal plants are still operating today with no pollution controls for mercury and air toxics and no clear plans to install them.”""

Blog Archive