Obama and Science Score A Big Win As Judge Tosses Challenge to Climate Change Rule


Some will call this a win for President Obama or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which it is – albeit an expected one. But it’s really a win for all of us who are based in reality and thus realize that poisoning our environment is killing people.

On Tuesday the first judicial challenge to President Obama’s Clean Power Plan rule was tossed out by a federal appeals court, which ruled that the regulations are only proposals and thus can’t be judged yet by the court. The plaintiffs (energy companies and states) filed too soon.

So sad.

Judge Brett Kavanaugh wrote in the opinion concurring with the ruling, “Petitioners are champing at the bit to challenge EPA’s anticipated rule restricting carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants. But EPA has not yet issued a final rule. It has issued only a proposed rule. Petitioners nonetheless ask the Court to jump into the fray now. They want us to do something that they candidly acknowledge we have never done before: review the legality of a proposed rule. But a proposed rule is just a proposal. In justiciable cases, this Court has authority to review the legality of final agency rules. We do not have authority to review proposed agency rules.”

Oh dear. Before conservatives get all outraged about the “activist” courts, Kavanaugh, who was staff secretary under former Republican President George W. Bush and worked for W during the Florida recount of 2000 as well as helping to get former Democratic President Bill Clinton impeached, was appointed by a Republican. Yes, Bush, who is sort of not the guy to mention if one is pretending that the courts are stacked against Republicans.

The June 2014 EPA proposal is part of President Obama’s goal via executive action to reduce carbon pollution by 30% from the power sector by 2030. This is naturally upsetting for climate destroyers because it sets the first ever carbon pollution standards for existing power plants. The White House charges that power plants are responsible for one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions.

The EPA describes the rule as follows:

In this action, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing emission guidelines for states to follow in developing plans to address greenhouse gas emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired electric generating units. Specifically, the EPA is proposing state-specific rate-based goals for carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector, as well as guidelines for states to follow in developing plans to achieve the state-specific goals. This rule, as proposed, would continue progress already underway to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired power plants in the United States.

Score one for President Obama’s executive actions on climate change, and a bigger one for the environment and the people’s health. Even the historically biased justices won’t hand conservatives/energy companies a free pre-pass to continue to poison us all.

Obviously, Republicans who largely stand against regulating what is killing us aren’t “pro-life”, and neither is anyone else who argues against reasonable efforts to reduce carbon pollution.

9 Replies to “Obama and Science Score A Big Win As Judge Tosses Challenge to Climate Change Rule”

  1. I’m sure no few Conservatives are wishing that they could pull a Sam Brownback on the Supreme Court right now.

  2. Oh my Mitch is having a bad month. First his Randriod turns on him over renewal of the Patriot Act. Then he’s threatened with a fillabuster or veto on appropriation bills. Now his war on coal theme didn’t gain the traction he expected with the courts, and they tossed out the challenge to the Clean Power Plan. I guess the states should reconsider not drawing up their plans to comply with the executive order on the EPA guidelines.
    Wonder how Mitch likes being the leader when no one will follow him? Ha ha ha!!!!

  3. I don’t understand why tea bag/repubs don’t want CLEAN AIR??

    Today, you can SEE downtown Los Angeles while it’s not perfect it’s still way better then than before
    I remember in the late 60’s when you couldn’t see downtown, except after a rain storm.

  4. Oh AndyCA, I remember summers where you could not breathe let alone see. They’d have smog alerts and no one was allowed outside because the air was so bad. Your lungs would ache for hours and you’d be coughing up brown gunk.

  5. Back in the 1980s when I was a student at UCLA I lived in Hollywoodland in the Beechwood Canyon. From the guest house I lived in you could on a clear day see the Downtown LA skyline, and Catalina Island. Those days were few and far between. It amazed me that the 1984 Olympic Games were held in LA because of the smog. The Hollywood Hills were an awesome place to be during the Olympics.

  6. I was born and raised in Riverside California. In the 1960s, 70s, and 80s you had to chew the air before breathing it.

  7. I lived in coastal Southern California from the mid-70s through the early 90s.

    I remember the layer of brown gunk on the horizon every day, smog alerts, being told not to take my babies outside, dreadful public transit systems, and so on.

    It was beginning to change by the time we moved to a rural area in the northern mid-west. You can see the difference if you catch any old classic tv show set in LA during the 70s or 80s versus a current show.

    It took us six months after moving up here to stop being amazed every day at the clear blue sky, the crystal clear horizon, and ooh, it looks as if a Santa Ana came through and blew all the gunk out to sea, and realize that it was just an ordinary day.

    The republicans are just plain sociopaths.

  8. Rick Santorum is outraged.
    “Legal matters should be left to the legal experts to decide, not judges!” /s/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.