TOTAL LAWSUITS: 27
Updated February 26, 2018
February 6, 2018
Sued EPA and Army Corps of Engineers to Block "Unlawful" Delay of Clean Water Rule
In U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, New York Attorney Genera Eric Schneiderman led a group of 11 attorneys general in suing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for suspending for two years the Clean Water Rule. The attorneys general argue the EPA ignored scientific evidence and a multi-year comment process and changed the definition of "waters of the United States."
[Release | Complaint | 11 AGs: California; Connecticut; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Jersey; New York; Oregon; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington; and Washington, D.C.]
January 31, 2018
Sued FERC for Records Related to Proposal to Bail Out Coal and Nuclear Companies
In U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington (Seattle), Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson sued FERC for nuclear and coal records under the Freedom of Information Act. "In light of the long periods of time in 2017 during which FERC failed to have a quorum of commissioners, failed to have a public meeting, and/or considered very significant changes to American energy markets, Washingtonians (and all Americans) deserve to know what was happening at FERC, especially among those few Commissioners who remained at the Commission."
[Complaint | Washington]
January 24, 2018
Sued Trump Administration Over Repeal of Fracking Rule
In District Court, Northern District of California, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed a lawsuit challenging the Department of the Interior’s repeal of the Fracking Rule for federal and tribal lands that would have required solid drilling-well construction, proper wastewater management, and the disclosure of chemicals used during the fracking process.
[Release | Complaint | California]
January 17, 2018
Sued EPA For Failing To Protect Residents From Out-Of-State Air Pollution
Attorneys general "filed a lawsuit against the Trump Administration for violating the federal Clean Air Act by failing to curb ground-level ozone (or “smog”) pollution that blows into New York" and Connecticut.
[Release | Complaint | 2 AGs: Connecticut and New York]
December 26, 2017
Sued EPA for Failing to Protect Residents from Out-of-State Pollution
Eight attorneys general, led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, sued EPA "to force action under the Clean Air Act to ensure upwind states adequately control the pollution that blows into New York and other downwind states...Specifically, the suit challenges the EPA’s denial of a petition that New York and several other states filed in late 2013 for the Agency to add nine additional states to the 'Ozone Transport Region,' a group of states established under the federal Clean Air Act that must act in concert to reduce smog pollution within the region."
[Release | Complaint | 8 AGs: Connecticut; Delaware; Maryland; Massachusetts; New York; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont]
December 19, 2017
After Winning Previous Lawsuit, Sued Dept. of the Interior for Suspending Methane Waste Prevention Rule
Attorneys general filed suit against the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) "over its decision to suspend the Waste Prevention Rule. The Rule went into effect on January 17, 2017 but was illegally suspended by the Trump Administration on December 8, 2017. The Rule requires oil and natural gas producers to cut wasteful leakage of methane on federal lands. In the lawsuit, Attorneys General Becerra and Balderas underscored that suspending key provisions of the Rule would be arbitrary and capricious as well as contrary to BLM's statutory mandate to prevent waste and ensure the safe and responsible development of oil and gas resources on public lands."
[Release | Complaint | 2 AGs: California and New Mexico]
December 5, 2017
Sued EPA For Flouting Clean Air Requirements
In District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general sued EPA "for failing to meet the Clean Air Act’s statutory deadline for designating areas of the country impacted by unhealthy levels of ground-level ozone (commonly referred to as smog)...With this suit, the coalition makes good on its pledge to sue the EPA if it failed to meet this key statutory and public health requirement."
[Release | Complaint | 15 AGs: California; Connecticut; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; Minnesota; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
October 17, 2017
Sued Dept. of the Interior for Unlawfully Repealing Valuation Rule, Which Ensures Taxpayers Receive Fair Share for Mineral Extraction
In District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general "for unlawfully repealing a rule that ensures taxpayers and States receive fair value for oil, gas, and coal extracted from public and tribal lands. California and New Mexico apply their portion of these royalties towards public education."
[Release |Complaint | 2 AGs: California and New Mexico]
September 27, 2017
Maryland AG Frosh Sued EPA Over Power Plant Pollution Control
In District Court, District of Maryland, Attorney General Brian Frosh sued EPA "for failing to act on a petition requiring power plants in five upwind states to implement air pollution controls...The complaint filed today cites research that 36 power plants in the five neighboring states emit pollution that contributes to poor air quality in Maryland and alleges that the power plants have failed to operate necessary pollution controls that would reduce pollution flowing into Maryland."
[Release | Complaint | Maryland]
September 21, 2017
California AG Becerra Sued Administration Over Environmental Concerns Near Mexico Border
In District Court, Southern District of California, Attorney General Xavier Becerra sued the Department of Homeland Security, claiming it "violated the U.S. Constitution, failed to comply with federal and state environmental laws, and relied on a federal statute that does not authorize the proposed projects."[Release | Complaint | California]
September 20, 2017
Sued Administration for Illegal Delay of Vehicle Emissions Rule
In District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general sued the Federal Highway Administration and the Department of Transportation "for their illegal delay of a regulation that would lead to significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles on federal highways across the country. The delayed regulation, known as the Greenhouse Gas Performance Measure, requires all states to measure and track greenhouse gas emissions and set locally-appropriate targets."
[Release | Complaint |8 AGs: California; Iowa; Maryland; Massachusetts; Minnesota; Oregon; Vermont; Washington]
September 11, 2017
Filed Lawsuit To Protect Fuel Efficiency Standards Rule
In the 2nd Court of Appeals in New York City, attorneys general sued the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration "for illegally delaying a rule that encourages automakers to produce vehicle fleets that meet or exceed federal fuel efficiency standards.Set to take effect in July 2017, the rule would increase the penalty imposed on automakers whose vehicle fleets do not meet minimum fuel efficiency standards. All federal agencies were required to increase their civil penalty rates by an act of Congress, the 2015 Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act. In response, the U.S. Department of Transportation issued a new rule to increase the penalty by $8.50 per tenth of a mile per gallon. The Trump Administration has delayed it, reverting back to the lower penalty rate instead. If the penalty is not sufficiently high, automakers lack a vital incentive to manufacture fuel efficient vehicles."
[Release | Petition for Review | 5 AGs: California; Maryland; New York; Pennsylvania; Vermont]
August 17, 2017
Sued EPA Over Eastern Long Island Sound Disposal Site Designation
In District Court, Eastern District of New York, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a lawsuit "challenging EPA’s decision to designate a permanent open water disposal site in eastern Long Island Sound for tens of millions of cubic yards of dredged sediments. The EPA’s site designation violates the Ocean Dumping Act and the Coastal Zone Management Act."
[Release | Complaint | New York]
August 11, 2017
California AG Sues EPA for Not Responding to FOIA Request
In D.C. District Court, Attorney General Xavier Becerra "filed a lawsuit against the EPA for failing to comply with a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. On April 7, the California Attorney General’s Office sent a letter to the EPA requesting documents on Administrator Scott Pruitt’s potential conflicts of interest. The EPA failed to respond by May 11 as required by law. Even after receiving Attorney General Becerra’s June 14 notice of violation letter and having ample time to gather the documents requested, the EPA has still not made the required disclosures."
[Release |Complaint |California]
August 1, 2017
Filed Lawsuit Against EPA For Stalling Action On Clean Air
In D.C. Court of Appeals, attorneys general sued EPA for "illegally stalling the designation of areas impacted by unhealthy levels of ground-level ozone (known as smog) – vital to protecting New Yorkers and other Americans from dangerous pollution."
[Release |Petition for Review |16 AGs: California; Connecticut; Delaware; Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Massachusetts; Minnesota; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
July 25, 2017
Sued EPA for Illegally Delaying Rule that Protect Communities & First Responders from Chemical Accidents
In D.C. Court of Appeals, attorneys general sued EPA "for illegally delaying a vital rule meant to protect communities, workers, and first responders from dangerous chemical accidents. The rule – the Accidental Release Prevention Requirements or the 'Chemical Accident Safety Rule'– makes critical improvements to Congressionally-mandated protections against explosions, fires, poisonous gas releases, and other accidents at more than 12,000 facilities across the country—including over 200 in New York—that store and use toxic chemicals. "
[Release |Petition for Review | 11 AGs: Illinois; Iowa; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington]
July 6, 2017
Challenged EPA's Approval of Toxic Pesticide Chlorpyrifos in Foods
In the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, attorneys genearl "moved to intervene in a lawsuit against the EPA...after filing legal objections with the EPA last month. In March 2017, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt took action that allowed the continued use of chlorpyrifos on food crops even while the agency failed to identify a safe level for the pesticide. Chlorpyrifos is widely used, including on fruits and vegetables consumed by infants, young children, and pregnant women, and is shown to negatively impact proper development and functioning of the central nervous system and brain."
[Release | Motion to Intervene | 6 AGs: Maryland; Massachusetts; New York; Vermont; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
July 5, 2017
Filed Lawsuit Against the Dept. of the Interior for Illegally Ignoring Methane Waste Prevention Rule
In United States District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general filed a lawsuit against the Bureau of Land Managemet for seeking to delay "certain compliance dates of the 'Waste Prevention Rule,' which was promulgated by the Bureau on November 18, 2016. Waste Prevention Rule provides a much-needed update of 38-year-old regulations governing the release of natural gas from new and existing oil and gas operations on federal and Indian lands, and clarifies when gas lost through venting, flaring, or leaks is subject to royalties. The Bureau estimated that the Rule would have substantial annual benefits, including producing up to 41 billion cubic feet of additional natural gas, eliminating 175,000-180,000 tons of methane emissions, cutting emissions of hazardous air pollutants by 250,000-267,000 tons, and generating up to $14 million in additional royalties. The Rule became effective on January 17, 2017."
[Release | Complaint | Judgment | 2 AGs: California and New Mexico]
June 20, 2017
Filed Intervention In EPA Lawsuit Seeking Reduction In Greenhouse Gas Emissions
In the D.C. Court of Appeals, attorneys general filed "a motion to intervene in a lawsuit against EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s actions to halt regulation of leaks of greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful air pollutants from new sources in the oil and gas industry."
[Release |Motion to Intervene | DC Court of Appeals | 14 AGs: Connecticut; Delaware; Illinois; Iowa; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Mexico; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington; Washington, D.C.]
June 13, 2017
Filed Suit Against Dept. of Energy For Failure to Publish Energy Efficiency Standards
In District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general sued the Department of Energy "over its failure to comply with the law and publish in the Federal Register finalized energy efficiency standards for five products: portable air conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies, air compressors, walk-in coolers and freezers and commercial packaged boilers. These standards would save consumers and businesses an estimated $11.6 billion, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 159 million tons, and conserve over 242 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity – the equivalent of the annual electricity consumption of more than 19.3 million households – over a 30-year period."
[Release | Complaint |11 AGs: California; Connecticut; Illinois; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New York; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Vermont; Washington]
May 16, 2017
Connecticut AG Jepsen Sued EPA for Failing to Act to Reduce Emissions from Pennsylvania Coal Plant
In District Court, District of Connecticut, Attorney General George Jepsen sue the EPA "for failure to take timely action on a petition from Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) asking the EPA to take action to stop pollution from a Pennsylvania coal-fired power plant from blowing our way."
[Release | Complaint | Connecticut]
May 10, 2017
Sued Dept. of the Interior Over Restarting Coal Leasing
In District Court, District of Montana, Great Falls Division, attorneys general sued the Department of the Interior after its decision "to restart federal coal leasing on public land while, at the same time, cutting short an ongoing, and long overdue, environmental review of the program." The suit "seeks to protect state residents from dangerous pollution that results from coal mining."
[Release | Complaint | 4 AGs: California; New Mexico; New York; Washington]
April 27, 2017
Sued Dept. of the Interior for Delaying Valuation Rule that Ensures Taxpayers Receive Fair Share for Mineral Extraction
In District Court, Northern District of California, attorneys general sued the Dept. of the Interior "for delaying the implementation of one of its own rules promulgated to ensure that taxpayers receive their fair share of royalties from companies that extract oil, gas, and coal from federal lands. The rule, known as the Valuation Rule, was finalized by the Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) in the Department of the Interior on July 1, 2016, and went into effect on January 1, 2017. The product of five years of public engagement, the Valuation Rule replaced outdated regulations that no longer ensured that taxpayers received adequate compensation from the extraction of federally-owned natural resources. It also addressed a loophole that allowed the coal industry to sell coal at artificially low prices."
[Release | Complaint | 2 AGs: California and New Mexico]
April 18, 2017
Filed to Intervene in Dept. of Energy Lawsuit To Defend Energy Efficiency Standards
In the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, attorneys general filed a motion to intervene "in order to defend energy saving light bulb regulations. In March, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) filed a lawsuit against DOE challenging energy efficiency regulations for lamps (light bulbs)...The challenged regulations broaden the definition of a category of lamp that is subject to stringent energy standards so that it now includes incandescent light bulbs as well as other historically inefficient lighting technologies. The lamp regulations were finalized in January 2017 and would result in substantial reductions in energy usage and the associated emissions, as well as increased cost savings for consumers."
[Release | Motion to Intervene | 7 AGs: California; Massachusetts; New York; Oregon; Vermont; Washington; Washington, D.C]
April 5, 2017
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.]
April 3, 2017
Challenged Department of Energy For Blocking Energy Efficiency Standards
In the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City, attorneys general filed a petition "challenging the Department’s delay in issuing its Energy Conservation Standard for Ceiling Fans. The Department of Energy has estimated that over a thirty-year period this standard would save enough electricity to power between 10 and 35 million U.S. households for a year. The Standard for Ceiling Fans should have gone into effect on March 20, 2017, but has now been delayed twice."
[Release | Petition for Review | 9 AGs: California; Connecticut; Illinois; Maine; Massachusetts; New York; Oregon; Vermont; Washington]
January 24, 2017
Filed to Intervene in EPA Suit to Keep Truck Emissions Rule in Place
In D.C. District Court, attorneys general filed a motion to intervene "to preserve a federal program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from new medium- and heavy-duty vehicles and engines...the attorneys general state they have substantial interests in strong, federal greenhouse gas emissions standards because such standards are needed – as part of broader efforts – to secure nationwide emissions reductions that are crucial to mitigate climate impacts that are already being experienced in their states. "
[Release | Motion to Intervene | 7 AGs: Connecticut; Iowa; Massachusetts; Oregon; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington]
January 19, 2017
Sought to Defend EPA Rule Protecting States From Upwind Smog Pollution
In D.C. District Court, attorneys general sought to intervene "in support of the EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Update Rule, which requires power plants in 22 states to significantly reduce smog pollution that blows into downwind states...and threatens public health." The measure "has been challenged by fourteen energy corporations and upwind states seeking to overturn the rule."
[Release | Motion to Intervene | 6 AGs: Maryland; Massachusetts; New Hampshire; New York; Rhode Island; Vermont]