EPA CO2 Rules Head to Court

“The EPA rules are ‘assuredly the most burdensome, costly, precedent-setting and far-reaching set of regulations ever adopted’ by the agency, the industry plaintiffs said in a court brief.”

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Republicans on the campaign trail have long bashed President Barack Obama’s environmental regulations. This week the battle moves to the courtroom, where several industries and GOP lawmakers are trying to overturn the administration’s rules for reducing greenhouse gases.

Industry groups, including those representing chemical, energy, farming and mining interests, have brought several challenges to the Environmental Protection Agency’s first-ever rules limiting carbon-dioxide emissions.

Industry groups will challenge an EPA finding on greenhouse gases. Above, a coal-fired power plant near Springfield, Ill., is shown last year.

In the lead case, the plaintiffs are challenging the EPA’s finding that such greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare. That finding formed the basis for agency rules that imposed greenhouse-gas-emissions standards on cars beginning with the 2012 model year and set initial rules on permits for power plants and factories.

Beginning Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit will hear two days of arguments on that case and three others involving challenges to those rules. The court often is considered the second most influential in the U.S. after the Supreme Court…

The challengers have a tiered strategy. In their best scenario, the D.C. appeals court would reject the EPA’s fundamental finding that greenhouse gases endanger the public, and nullify all the rules based on it.

Failing that, the plaintiffs hope to knock out as many of the specific rules as possible. For example, if the court were to strike down the tailpipe rules for cars, the EPA would lose the underpinning for its greenhouse-gas regulations on industrial facilities…

Read the entire report.