Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency

Massachusetts V. Environmental Protection Agency

Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency

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Description:
Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency, 549 U.S. 497 (2007), is a U.S. Supreme Court case decided 5-4 in which twelve states and several cities of the United States brought suit against the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to force that federal agency to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases as pollutants.

Background

Section 202(a)(1) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), 42 U.S.C. ยง 7521(a)(1), requires the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to set emission standards for "any air pollutant" from motor vehicles or motor vehicle engines "which in his judgment cause, or contribute to, air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare."

In 2003, the EPA made two determinations:
  1. The EPA lacked authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) for climate change purposes.
  2. Even if the EPA did have such authority, it would decline to set GHG emissions standards for vehicles.


Parties

The petitioners were the states of California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington, the cities of New York, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C., the territory of American Samoa, and the organizations Center for Biological Diversity, Center for Food Safety, Conservation Law Foundation, Environmental Advocates,......
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