In yet another shocking decision, the Supreme Court ruled last week that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does not have the authority to limit power plant emissions. As a result of that ruling in the case of West Virginia v. EPA, it could now be up to individual states to determine their own limits for emissions.
The Supreme Court ruled that the EPA can’t enforce emission level limits without congressional approval. Congressional approval is unlikely to happen anytime soon. This decision strips the EPA of some of its power to protect the environment and to tackle climate change.
In a statement issued June 30, EPA Administrator Michael Regan said, “At this moment, when the impacts of the climate crisis are becoming ever more disruptive, costing billions of dollars every year from floods, wildfires, droughts and sea level rise, and jeopardizing the safety of millions of Americans, the Court’s ruling is disheartening.”
The PA House Democrats’ Climate Caucus issued a similar statement July 1, saying, “Tragically for our country and the world, the U.S. Supreme Court has taken the short-term view and sided with the coal industry at the expense of the welfare of the American people and the world.”
It is feared that this fall in the case of Sackett v. EPA, the Supreme Court could decide that the EPA cannot enforce the Clean Water Act without congressional approval.
What You can Do: