The tax subsidies provided under the Affordable Care Act to pay for health insurance are, of course, the subject of significant press coverage since dueling federal appeals courts came to different conclusions about who receives them this week. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals held, in a 2-1 decision called Harbig v. Burwell, that an […]
A new report shows that FERC has extensive power to address climate change.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has captured the attention of the energy world with its proposed regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants – and for good reason. The EPA’s authority is broad and its resolve to address climate change is evident. But other federal agencies are in a position to […]
The structure of permitting programs can make a big difference for the implementation of environmental law
Author’s Note: The following post is co-authored by Eric Biber and J.B. Ruhl, the David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair of Law and the Co-Director of the Energy, Environment, and Land Use Program at Vanderbilt Law School. This post is cross-posted at Reg Blog. Reg Blog, supported by the U Penn Program on Regulation is an […]
EPA is right to include climate impacts on foreign countries in its cost-benefit analysis of regulations.
When a regulation benefits people outside the U.S., should those benefits be counted? Or should a cost-benefit analysis include only positive and negative domestic impacts? As a recent paper by Ted Gayer and Kip Viscusi highlights, EPA has been counting the benefits of restricting carbon emissions for the entire world, not just the U.S. […]
Justices Decline to Address Constitutionality of LCFS
The U.S. Supreme Court today denied certiorari in closely-watched cases in which the constitutionality of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) was being challenged. The LCFS is, in turn, an integral part of the state’s multifaceted strategy to reduce California’s aggregate greenhouse gas emissions as required under AB 32, the state’s landmark 2006 climate change […]
Will the Justices Choose to Decide the LCFS's Constitutionality?
You might think that the U.S. Supreme Court, having decided the Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA Clean Air Act case on Monday, was done for the current Term when it comes to environmental law and policy. Think again. Today the justices met in conference to decide whether to grant review in a large number of pending […]
While FRA Considers New Federal Regulations, States Can Ramp Up Prevention and Emergency Response
At a joint Senate and Assembly hearing last week on oil by rail safety in California, some lawmakers expressed frustration at slow federal action, and asked what California can do to increase public safety. My testimony focused on federal preemption issues, defining areas where the state can regulate, and those where it is preempted by […]
The U.S. Supreme Court today issued its long-awaited decision in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency, the justices’ third encounter with climate change law and policy. In a Solomonic ruling, the Court ruled that EPA lacks authority to require the operators of “stationary sources” of greenhouse gas emissions (power plants, factories, etc.) to obtain […]
Ruling is Especially Timely, Given California's Ongoing and Severe Drought Conditions
I recently wrote about a then-pending court case in which California grape growers were challenging the State Water Resources Control Board’s limits on the growers’ diversion of water from California rivers and streams to provide frost protection for their grapes. That litigation is important because it goes to the heart of the Board’s authority under […]
Despite all the attacks it has suffered, EPA has a better image than either political party. Not to mention Congress.
Republicans — especially the House GOP — often lambaste EPA. The phrase “jack-booted thugs” will stick in my memory a long time. A recent NBC/WSJ poll, however, shows EPA is actually one of our more popular institutions: %Positive %Negative Difference EPA 40 28 +7 Barack Obama 38 40 -4 Democratic Party 38 50 -2 Republican […]