Court Backs Texas In Fight With EPA | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 90 Issue 15 | p. 29 | Concentrates
Issue Date: April 9, 2012

Court Backs Texas In Fight With EPA

Department: Government & Policy
News Channels: Environmental SCENE
Keywords: Clean Air Act, air pollution, Texas

A federal appeals court has sided with Texas in a long-running dispute with EPA over the Clean Air Act. EPA rejected the state’s plan for controlling emissions of harmful air pollutants in September 2010, contending that it was too lax and didn’t satisfy the Clean Air Act. But the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans ruled late last month that the agency had no legal basis to reject the state’s plan for reducing air pollution from refineries and coal plants. EPA failed to identify any provisions of the law that the Texas program violated, the court said. It ordered EPA to reconsider the Texas regulations, instructing the agency to limit the review to ensure that the state meets the minimal federal requirements governing state implementation plans for managing air pollution. “If Texas’s regulations satisfy those basic requirements, EPA must approve them,” the court said. The agency may still reject the state’s approach, but it will have to demonstrate how the plan fails to meet the objectives of the federal statute.

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