SCOTUS Says Power Plants Have a Right to Pollute

smoke stacks (1)

In its final ruling for the term, the Supreme Court weakened the EPA’s ability to do its job, namely it’s ability to regulate power plants.  Let’s face it, with all those rulings in favor of human beings, the conservative justices had to throw a bone to their political allies.  The 5-4 ruling held:

EPA interpreted §7412(n)(1)(A) unreasonably when it deemed cost irrelevant to the decision to regulate power plants. Pp. 5-15. (a) Agency action is unlawful if it does not rest ” ‘on a consideration of the relevant factors.’ ” Motor Vehicle Mfrs. Assn. of United States, Inc. v. State Farm Mut. Automobile Ins. Co., 463 U. S. 29, 43. Even under the deferential standard of Chevron U. S. A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 467 U. S. 837, which directs courts to accept an agency’s reasonable resolution of an ambiguity in a statute that the agency administers, id., at 842-843, EPA strayed well beyond the bounds of reasonable interpretation in concluding that cost is not a factor relevant to the appropriateness of regulating power plants. Pp. 5-6. (b) “Appropriate and necessary” is a capacious phrase. Read naturally against the backdrop of established administrative law, this phrase plainly encompasses cost. It is not rational, never mind “appropriate,” to impose billions of dollars in economic costs in return for a few dollars in health or environmental benefits.

This is the Supreme Court’s way of saying prevention of pollution only matters if it isn’t too burdensome for the corporation – notwithstanding the consequences to people and the planet.  Justice Scalia wrote the decision, making his priorities very clear.

 EPA must consider cost—including cost of compliance—before deciding whether regulation is appropriate and necessary. It will be up to the Agency to decide (as always, within the limits of reasonable interpretation) how to account for cost.

So there you have it.  The Court has said if corporations are unwilling to pay to minimize damage to the environment and to the health of people that is far more important than preserving the planet. The Koch brothers will be pleased.

If you’re ready to read more from the unbossed and unbought Politicus team, sign up for our newsletter here!

8 Replies to “SCOTUS Says Power Plants Have a Right to Pollute”

  1. This is the epitome of Republicanism: The Right for the Right to defecate into our drinking water, and to fart into our air, and to vomit into our food.

  2. So, are the RW fundamentalist’s outraged about destroying God’s creation? Our earth….the air we breath, the water we drink? This is truly a attack on religion. Plus this decision affects ALL life!
    Greed before life.

  3. the rest of the rationale, so clearly bloviated by Sen McCain, is that we (Republicans) make it cheap enough for you afford the stuff even as you choke…

    you can have a lot of it to make your life pleasant even as you’re poisoned to death by bad air and bad water…

  4. SCOTUS surprised a lot of us with some good findings this week.

    I can’t help but notice…the one decision that involved big $$ went in favor to big corporations.

    I feel as though I’ve been thrown a bone!

  5. To quote the Floyd:
    Money, get back
    I’m all right Jack keep your hands off of my stack
    Money, it’s a hit
    Don’t give me that do goody good bullshit
    I’m in the high-fidelity first class traveling set
    And I think I need a Lear jet

    How many lear jets do the koch suckers need?

  6. Lets all “petition” their (SCOTUS “Catholic” Judges) Supreme “Boss” on this planet the “Pope” too “Excommunicate” these proven “followers” of the “ANTICHRIST” and Destroyers of the entire planet that their very own “God” in the “Bible” “Created” for all mankind and nature to live. I truly “Believe” that their Catholic Religions “GOD” would be extremely pleased “if” the Pope did this. And then “God” may even give us dumb-ass human beings a actual fighting chance too “SAVE” ourselves and the earth. If we work hard enough by ourselves (“God” won’t help us.) too accomplish this task (before its too late). Or we could just all kick-back and “allow” the “ANTICHRIST and his “Catholic” Republican “minions” too control the planet. “OUR” CHOICE GUYS!!! “HELL ON EARTH” OR “HEAVEN ON EARTH”???

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.