Plaintiffs Regroup


In May, together with the United States Department of Justice, we filed a “Joint Stipulation of Dismissal” of our federal lawsuit.

We can summarize the proceedings to that point. In June 2022, our plaintiffs’ group filed our Petition to Phase Out Greenhouse Gas Pollution. In its September 14, 2022 response, EPA denied our petition, in part, on the ground that the Agency was working on a series of administrative rules that would meet President Biden’s decarbonization goals when implemented.

We challenged EPA’s denial on November 21, 2022, by filing suit in the Federal District Court of Oregon. In our complaint, we argued that the Court should not credit EPA’s assertion that it would, someday, issue draft rules. What is required by law is action: mere words cannot supplant the law’s mandate to eliminate unreasonable risks to health and the environment stemming from dangerous chemicals.

Subsequent to our filing, EPA did actually begin to make good on its assertions, at least in form. On April 12, 2023, EPA announced its newly proposed GHG emissions standards applicable to model year 2027 light- and medium-duty vehicles. Then, on May 23, 2023, the Agency released its newly-proposed rules to restrict GHG emissions from fossil-fuel fired power plants.

With publication of EPA’s new draft rules, the operative substantive question changed to whether they would suffice to eliminate the unreasonable risk. But that was an issue about which the Court likely would not deem it appropriate to undertake its own evaluation in the first instance.

And so, we are now hard at work undertaking the necessary analysis, soon after which we will ready our new initiative(s). Along the way, we aim to extend to the Agency every opportunity to adopt more stringent measures as required to vigorously confront the climate crisis.

In order to best fashion a reasonable and just path forward, we will also soon be seeking your considered thoughts. We hope you will stay tuned for that. And, in the meantime, we appreciate your unwavering support. Your continued generosity inspires us to redouble our efforts and continue the fight for the protection and restoration of our shared planet.

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