Climate Changes

United State Of America

Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency

549 U.S. 497 (2023)

The United States Supreme Court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) exceeded its authority when it issued a rule regulating greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. The Court found that the Clean Air Act does not authorize the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions as a whole, but only to regulate specific pollutants that contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2015, the EPA issued the Clean Power Plan, which regulated greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. The Clean Power Plan was the centerpiece of the Obama administration's plan to combat climate change. The Clean Power Plan was challenged by a number of states and industry groups, who argued that the EPA exceeded its authority when it issued the rule. The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case in February 2023 and issued its decision on June 30, 2023.

The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that the EPA exceeded its authority when it issued the Clean Power Plan. The Court found that the Clean Air Act does not authorize the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions as a whole, but only to regulate specific pollutants that contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. The Court stated that "the EPA has not persuaded us that Congress has authorized an agency to regulate greenhouse gas emissions on an end-to-end basis" and that "the Clean Power Plan goes beyond what Congress authorized the EPA to do."

The Supreme Court's decision invalidated the Clean Power Plan. The EPA is now required to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants on a narrow basis. The Supreme Court's decision in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency is a significant setback for the fight against climate change. The decision makes it more difficult for the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, and it could have a significant impact on the Biden administration's efforts to combat climate change. The Supreme Court's decision in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency was widely reported on by the media and quickly went viral on social media. The decision has been condemned by environmentalists and praised by industry groups.

Held v. State

Montana trial court ruled that state law’s restriction on consideration of climate change impacts violated youth plaintiff’s constitution rights. In a lawsuit brought by 16 youth plaintiffs a Montana trial court ruled that a provision of the Montana environmental policy Act (MEPA) prohibiting consideration of greenhouse gas emissions and corresponding climate change impacts in environmental reviews and violated the plaintiff’s right to a clean and healthful environment under the Montana constitution. The court held that the plaintiff’s had a fundamental right to a clean and healthful environment, which includes climate as part of the environmental life support system.The court also held that a statutory provision limiting the remedies available to MEPA litigants violated the Montana constitution because  it removes the only preventative, equitable relief available to the public and MEPA litigants.

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