Environment
2:07 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Environmentalists & Attorney General Both Happy About EPA Case, But For Different Reasons

Texas Environmentalists and Attorney General Greg Abbott are pleased that the U.S. Supreme Court is willing to hear the case regarding how the Environmental Protection Agency will regulate power plant greenhouse gases.

"We hope the Supreme Court rules in the EPA’s favor -- that they adopt the standards -- however, even if they don’t the EPA does have other ways to get at this issue," said Luke Metzger, executive director of Environment Texas.

Metzger said the EPA could rewrite the rules and target chemical pollutant that is emitted with the carbon gases.

University of Texas law professor Tom McGarity said Abbott is arguing that the new permitting effort violates the Clean Air Act by widening the agency’s reach.

"If they decide to uphold it, it’s still probably not the ideal way of going about it," McGarity said. "It would be better to have a statute that was devoted to greenhouse gases, but it will allow us to move forward."

But McGarity said getting a statute out of the current seated congress addressing greenhouse gases would nearly impossible.

In a written statement, Abbott said:

"The EPA violated the U.S. Constitution and the federal Clean Air Act when it concocted greenhouse gas regulations out of whole cloth. The EPA’s illegal regulations threaten Texas jobs and Texas employers. As Texas has proven in other lawsuits against the EPA, this is a runaway federal agency, so we are pleased the Obama Administration will have to defend its lawless regulations before the U.S. Supreme Court."