TOTAL ACTIONS: 10
Updated August 8 2018
Submitted Comments to EPA on Risk Evaluations for Toxic Substances
A coalition of 11 Attorneys General submitted comments to the EPA strongly critical of the Agency’s proposed framework for the evaluation of the risk posed by toxic chemicals like asbestos to public health and the environment. The AGs argue in their comments that the EPA’s new proposal is counter to the intended purpose of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which was signed into law just two years ago on June 22, 2016. The Lautenberg Act was passed as an amendment to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).
The AGs contend that Congress amended TSCA in a clear attempt to remove obstacles that had prevented the EPA from playing “a more robust role in protecting public health and the environment,” and that the Agency’s attempt to ignore known uses of toxic chemicals represents an “unlawfully restrictive application of TSCA.” The AGs argue that this can only result in “deeply flawed risk evaluations” that “make it impossible for EPA to fulfill its statutory mandate.”
[Comments | 11 AGs: Massachusetts, California, Hawai’i, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia]
August 2, 2018
Announced intention to file suit against the EPA, DOT over Car Emissions Standards
A coalition of 20 Attorneys General announced that they were prepared to fight the Trump Administration’s proposal to revoke California’s waiver under the Clean Air Act, which allows the State to set its own emissions standard for greenhouse gas emissions. The AGs announced that they are also prepared for a legal battle over the Administration’s proposal to weaken emissions standards for passenger cars and light trucks for model years 2021 through 2026.
12 States and the District of Columbia have adopted the emissions standards set by California, which is the only State that is able to set its own standard under federal law. AGs from all 12 States and the District of Columbia joined the coalition.
[Statement | 20 AGs: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawai’i, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia]
July 26, 2018
Filed Amicus Brief Challenging Appellate Court Ruling on HFC Prohibition
A coalition of 18 Attorneys General filed an amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to overturn a divided U.S. District Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in Mexichem Flour vs. EPA (2017). Relying on a strained reading of the Clean Air Act, a divided lower court ruled that EPA does not have the authority to phase out the use of hydroflourocarbons (HFCs) in air conditioning and refrigerants, even though HFCs are potent greenhouse gases (“air pollutants” under the Clean Air Act) that contribute significantly to climate change.
In their brief, the AGs advanced a compelling argument that the lower court erred in its reading of Section 612 of the Clean Air Act. They joined with environmental and industry petitioners in requesting Supreme Court review.
[Amicus Brief | 18 AGs: Massachusetts; Connecticut; Delaware; Hawai’i; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Minnesota; New Jersey; New York; North Carolina; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; and the District of Columbia]
April 26, 2018
Filed Comments to Defend the Clean Power Plan
Nineteen attorneys general filed comments with the EPA to defend the Clean Power Plan (CPP) and oppose the "unlawful and unsupported" repeal proposed by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. "EPA's proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan is contrary to the Clean Air Act and arbitrary and capricious. To propose to repeal the Plan-without having first put in place a replacement rule that requires equivalent or greater pollution reductions-is nothing less than an abdication of EPA's duty to protect public health and welfare from what it has recognized to be the nation's most urgent environmental threat," wrote the attorneys general.
[Release | Comments | 19 AGs: California; Connecticut; Delaware; Hawai'i; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; North Carolina; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; and Washington, D.C.]
February 27, 2018
Responded To EPA's “Advance Notice” Of Rule To Possibly Replace Clean Power Plan
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman led 18 attorneys general in filing comments opposing the "Environmental Protection Agency’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking ('Advance Notice') on a 'potential' replacement to the Clean Power Plan."
[Release | Comments | 18 AGs: California; Connecticut; Hawaii; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Mexico; New York; North Carolina; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
January 9, 2018
Called on Scott Pruitt to be Recused from Clean Power Plan Repeal Process
EPA's "failure to disqualify" Administrator Scott Pruitt from the Clean Power Plan repeal process has "irreparably tainted" the rulemaking because he "prejudged" the outcome prior to and during his tenure leading the Agency, resulting in a "lack of due process and fairness," argued California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, along with 12 other attorneys general and six municipalities, in comments filed today. Therefore, EPA "must withdraw the proposed repeal," or "any resulting rule will be invalid."
[Release | Comments | 13 AGs: California; Delaware; Hawaii; Illinois; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Vermont; and Washington; and Washington, D.C.]
Promised Legal Fight If EPA Moves To Roll Back Key Vehicle Emission Standards
Attorneys general "warned the Trump Administration that any effort to roll back key vehicle emission standards would be met by a 'vigorous' court challenge. In a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, the coalition makes clear that it will take legal action if the EPA attempts to weaken air pollution standards set for passenger cars and light-duty trucks for model years 2022 to 2025."
[Release |Letter to EPA | 14 AGs: Connecticut; Delaware; Hawai'i; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington; Washingon, D.C.]
June 6, 2017
Joined National "We Are Still In" Pledge To Maintain Commitments To Paris Climate Agreement
Attorneys general declared they are still committed to the goals outlined in the Paris Climate Accord after President Trump announced the United States would pull out of the agreement.
[Release | Pledge | 19 AGs: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, D.C.]
Opposed EPA's Efforts To Stall Clean Power Plan Case
In the D.C. Court of Appeals, attorneys general "filed opposition to the Trump administration’s request to delay court proceedings regarding the Clean Power Plan...after President Trump signed an executive order directing the EPA to review the Clean Power Plan and decide whether to 'suspend, rescind, or revise' it...EPA filed a motion asking the court to hold the litigation in abeyance while the Agency reconsiders the rule."
[Release | Opposition to Motion to Hold Proceeding in Abeyance |18 AGs: California; Connecticut; Deleware; Hawai'i; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; Minnesota; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Rhode Island; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
March 30, 2017
Urged Congress to Reject Proposals Gutting the EPA
Attorney generals opposed "the proposed federal budget cuts to the EPA and its critical programs...the attorneys general point to the President’s recent proposal to cut 31 percent from the EPA’s budget, which is the biggest cut of any federal agency in the White House 2018 budget, as well as a bill introduced by Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz that would eliminate the EPA entirely on December 31, 2018."[Release |Letter to Congress | 13 AGs: Connecticut; Hawai'i; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington, D.C.]