The Clean Air Act of 1970

“The ruling strikes down weak rules for coal-burning power plants and gives the Biden administration a freer hand to impose tighter restrictions.

By Lisa Friedman for the New York Times, 19JAN20

“Judges’ eviscerated the Trump administration’s core argument: that the only possible way to interpret the Clean Air Act of 1970 is that the federal government does not have the authority to set national restrictions on emissions or force states to move away from fossil fuel power. That argument that would have prevented Mr. Biden or any future administration from tackling climate change from power plants without an explicit new law from Congress.

“The Trump administration, the judges said, “may not shirk its responsibility by imagining new limitations that the plain language of the statute does not clearly require.”

“Molly Block, a spokeswoman for the E.P.A., said the Trump administration was disappointed in the ruling and said it “risks injecting more uncertainty at a time when the nation needs regulatory stability.”

“Environmental groups and legal experts saw the decision as a vindication of the argument that the government does have the authority to tackle climate change.

“It’s a massive win,” said Jody Freeman, a professor of environmental law at Harvard University…” – excerpted from The New York Times, 19JAN20

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