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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

US Supreme Court limits EPA in curbing power plant emissions

Us Supreme Court Limits Epa In Curbing Power Plant Emissions

In a blow to the fight against climate change, the Supreme Court on Thursday limited how the country’s main air pollution law could be used to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

With Conservatives in the majority, by a 6-3 vote, the court held that the Clean Air Act does not give the Environmental Protection Agency broad authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants that contribute to global warming.

The court’s decision could complicate the administration’s plans to tackle climate change. Its proposal to regulate power plant emissions is expected by the end of the year.

President Joe Biden aims to halve the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the decade and create an emissions-free power sector by 2035. Power plants account for about 30% of carbon dioxide production.

Judges heard arguments in the case on the same day that a UN panel report warned that the effects of climate change were going to be much worse, leaving the world sicker, hungry, poorer and more dangerous in the coming years.

The power plant case has a long and complicated history that begins with the Obama administration’s clean energy plan. That plan would require states to reduce emissions from electricity generation, primarily by moving away from coal-fired plants.

But that plan never came to fruition. Acting in a lawsuit filed by West Virginia and others, the Supreme Court blocked it in 2016 by a 5-4 vote, with conservatives in the majority.

With the plan stalled, the legal battle over it continued. But after President Donald Trump took office, the EPA scrapped the Obama-era plan. The agency argued that its authority to reduce carbon emissions was limited and created a new plan that sharply reduced the federal government’s role in the issue.

New York, 21 other predominantly Democratic states, the District of Columbia and some of the nation’s largest cities sued over the Trump plan. The federal appeals court in Washington ruled against both the repeal and the new plan, and its decision left little to no effect while the new administration drafted a new policy.

Adding to the unusual nature of the High Court’s involvement, the cuts sought in the Obama plan by 2030 have already been achieved through the market-driven closure of hundreds of coal plants.

Power plant operators serving 40 million people called on the court to preserve companies’ flexibility to reduce emissions while maintaining reliable service. Major businesses including Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Tesla also supported the administration.

Nineteen mostly Republican-led states and coal companies led the fight in the Supreme Court against broad EPA authority to regulate carbon production.

This article is republished from – Voa News – Read the – original article.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Deskhttps://worldnationnews.com/
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