Attorney General Actions

State attorneys general are working to advance clean energy, climate and environmental laws and policies. Use the filters below to search actions of regional and national significance taken by state attorneys general since 2017. To alert us to an action that should be added to our database, email stateimpactcenter@nyu.edu.

 

  • January 13, 2021
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led a coalition of 17 attorneys general in filing a petition for review of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) decision to leave inadequate National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM) in place, despite significant and growing evidence that the existing standards are insufficiently protective of public health. Particulate matter pollution is believed to be the most harmful environmental health risk factor…
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin
  • January 11, 2021
    Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh led a coalition of 12 attorneys general in filing comments criticizing the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) draft guidance on implementation of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund, a case centered on the applicability of Clean Water Act permitting requirements to discharges of pollutants that reach protected surface waters through groundwater conduits. In their comments, the attorneys general warned that…
    Documents: Comments
    States: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, D.C.
  • December 29, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led a coalition of 15 attorneys general in filing a petition for review of the Energy Department’s decision to create a new product class under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) for fast-cycle residential dishwashers. The Energy Department's new product class is not currently subject to any energy efficiency standards, in violation if the EPCA’s anti-backsliding provision.
    States: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • December 23, 2020
    New York Attorney General Letitia James and Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Neronha led a coalition of 20 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to reject an attempt by major oil and gas companies to prevent the City of Baltimore’s lawsuit to hold them accountable for the impacts of climate change from proceeding in state court. As the attorneys general outlined in their brief, the companies’ arguments in favor of removing the case to federal court…
    Documents: Amicus Brief
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • December 22, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led a coalition of 12 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief urging the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to uphold a district court’s vacatur of Nationwide Permit 12, which the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers improperly reauthorized in 2017 without engaging in Endangered Species Act (ESA)-mandated consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service. Nationwide Permit 12 relies on programmatic…
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington
  • December 21, 2020
    Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey led a coalition of 14 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of environmental groups seeking a preliminary injunction to halt the Trump administration’s “sudden rush” to sell leases and authorize seismic surveying for oil and gas development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The attorneys general warned that allowing the administration to proceed with its “rushed and…
    Documents: Amicus Brief
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington
  • November 23, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson led a coalition of 23 attorneys general in filing an amended complaint in their challenge of the Trump administration’s overhaul of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations. The amended complaint added a claim stemming from the Council on Environmental Quality’s (CEQ) failure to engage in consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service…
    States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Guam, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C., Wisconsin
  • November 20, 2020
    New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of 16 attorneys general in filing comments urging the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to change course on its decision to leave the existing National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter in place despite a significant and growing body of scientific evidence that they are inadequately protective of public health. The attorneys general highlighted three recently published scientific studies that…
    Documents: Comments
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington
  • November 09, 2020
    New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of 15 attorneys general in filing a lawsuit against the Energy Department over its failure to comply with its obligations under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) to review and amend energy efficiency standards for 25 categories of consumer and commercial appliances, including water heaters, clothes dryers, air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers. In their complaint, the attorneys general emphasized that the department’s…
    States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • November 06, 2020
    Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson led a coalition of 14 attorneys general in filing comments opposing a plan to conduct seismic surveying for oil and gas resources within the sensitive Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In their comments, the attorneys general warned that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has “failed to provide the public with any information about the environmental impacts” of the plan, which are…
    Documents: Comments
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington
  • October 19, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led a coalition of 12 attorneys general in filing comments sharply criticizing a proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish hollow greenhouse gas emissions standards for airplanes that would result in no actual emissions reductions. In their comments, the attorneys general warned that the proposal “is an empty exercise that substitutes feeble, already-obsolete standards for the critically needed regulation…
    States: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • October 13, 2020
    Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum led a coalition of 16 attorneys general in submitting comments in opposition to a proposal by the Energy Department to create a new product class under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) for fast-cycle clothes washers and dryers. The proposal would exempt such appliances from EPCA energy efficiency standards altogether — including from baseline standards set by Congress — in violation of the statute’s anti-backsliding provision.…
    Documents: Comments | OR Press Release
    States: Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • October 08, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey led a coalition of 17 attorneys general in submitting comments in opposition to a proposal by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that would skew the process for designating critical habitat for protection under the Endangered Species Act in favor of development and extractive industry interests. In their comments, the attorneys general noted that the proposal…
    States: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin
  • October 05, 2020
    Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel led a coalition of 20 attorneys general in sending a letter urging congressional leaders to ensure that the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes provisions to “help safeguard the public and environment against the highly persistent and toxic class of chemical compounds known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).” The attorneys general urged Congress to provide the Defense Department with “the tools necessary to…
    Documents: Letter | MI Press Release
    States: Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Guam, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • October 02, 2020
    Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson led a coalition of 10 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in litigation in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit over the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) finding that the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality waived its Section 401 authority with respect to a proposed hydroelectric project on the Haw River in central North Carolina. The amicus brief emphasized that FERC’s “erroneous” finding…
    Documents: Amicus Brief
    States: California, Connecticut, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oregon, Vermont, Virginia, Washington
  • October 01, 2020
    New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of 14 attorneys general in filing comments in opposition to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposal to retain the existing National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone, which were set in 2015 at 70 parts per billion. In their comments, the attorneys general highlighted extensive problems with the process by which the EPA reached its decision, which they warned “fails, given the existing and…
    Documents: Comments
    States: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C., Wisconsin
  • September 23, 2020
    Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey led a coalition of 18 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of Native American tribes challenging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ decision to re-approve a key easement for the Dakota Access Pipeline based on a still-deficient National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review. The amicus brief was filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, which is considering pipeline proponents’ appeal of a district court…
    States: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Guam, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • September 22, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson led a coalition of 22 attorneys general in notifying the Trump administration of their intent to add Endangered Species Act claims to their ongoing challenge of the administration’s weakening of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) implementing regulations, based on the administration’s failure to consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries…
    Documents: Notice | CA Press Release
    States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Guam, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • September 14, 2020
    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led a coalition of 21 attorneys general in filing a petition for review of the the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) rescission of regulations put in place during the Obama administration to reduce emissions of methane, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other harmful pollutants from new sources in the oil and gas industry. The EPA’s rescission rule eliminates regulations on methane emissions from new sources across the entire natural gas…
    States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C.
  • September 14, 2020
    Connecticut Attorney General William Tong filed a state lawsuit against ExxonMobil alleging that the company “misled and deceived Connecticut consumers about the negative effects of its business practices on the climate” through a “systematic campaign of deception” that spanned several decades. The complaint emphasized that the company’s efforts were “wide ranging, including targeting consumers to spread and reinforce doubt about established climate science” with the goal of “…
    States: Connecticut