As counsel for the local officials who are the first responders to the catastrophic harm caused by global warming, Community Rights Counsel welcomed the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling today in Massachusetts v. EPA, holding that EPA must reconsider whether to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles under section 202 of the federal Clean Air Act.
CRC’s Executive Director, Doug Kendall, praised the ruling: “ State and local officials have been leading this nation in its response to global warming. The court today recognized the critical role these officials are playing as the laboratories of our democracy, and it gave ‘special solicitude’ to their views. This is what federalism should be all about.”
CRC’s Chief Counsel, Timothy J. Dowling, added: “As the first responders to the storms, heatwaves, flooding, and other harm caused by global warming, local officials are greatly relieved the court has ordered EPA to reconsider its ostrich-like position.”
The ruling represents a tremendous victory in one of the most important environmental cases ever decided by the Supreme Court on the preeminent environmental challenge of our time.
CRC filed amicus briefs in support of the petition for certiorari and on the merits on behalf of a large coalition of local officials and planners. Its clients on the merits brief included: the U.S. Conference of Mayors, National Association of Counties, International Municipal Lawyers Association, American Planning Association, and the cities of Seattle, Albuquerque, Burlington, and San Francisco.