Environmental Group Disappointed in Supreme Court EPA Ruling

Source: Community Environmental Council

In response to today’s Supreme Court ruling on the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to broadly regulate carbon emissions from existing power plants, Community Environmental Council CEO/Executive Director, Sigrid Wright released this statement:

“The Supreme Court’s decision is out-of-touch with science and the values that the vast majority of Americans share. It puts polluters ahead of people. Fortunately, we are not relying on or waiting for national policy, as we painfully learned during the last Administration. We are forging local and state solutions like never before with unrelenting, focused and inclusive climate action. The science dictates that it is not too late to mitigate and adapt; we will follow the science, not the Supreme Court.”

The Community Environmental Council (CEC) advances rapid and equitable solutions to the climate crisis – including ambitious zero carbon goals, drawdown of excess carbon, and protection against the impacts of climate change. CEC was recognized as a 2020 California Nonprofit of the Year and a City of Santa Barbara Climate Hero, and CEO Sigrid Wright was recently named 2022 Congressional Woman of the Year. CEC has worked since 1970 to incubate and innovate real life environmental solutions that directly affect the California Central Coast. Our programs lead to clean vehicles, solar energy, resilient food systems and reduction of single-use plastic. Learn more about why CEC is one of only five nonprofits in Santa Barbara County to have the highest possible ratings on Charity Navigator and Guidestar at CECSB.org/impact. 


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  1. I love how conservatives, who are generally more “Christian” (in quotes because they’re nothing of the sort in reality), don’t give a rats a@@ about the earth that their God “gave” them. He’s going to be sooooooo pissed at you guys when he comes back!

  2. The Supreme Court is not tasked with interpreting science, nor is it equipped to do so. The Supreme Court interprets the law. The court found the epa was not granted the authority to implement these regulations, and the authority to do that remains vested in the legislative branch of government. See the court’s ruling below. The implementation of the proposed regulations would require an act of Congress, but due to bipartisan opposition it is unlikely that a majority of the people’s elected representatives would pass such a measure.

  3. @a-1656620038 The Supreme Court Justices should be tasked with interpreting lying under oath and disbar themselves …resign for the sake of our democracy and environment. They are doing a disservice to the Country, Our Quality of Life and Human Rights. Please do us all a favor and resign now.

  4. They are extremely experienced in the courtroom and very careful with their words, they would not have perjured themselves and tip-toed carefully around any RvW questions, just like every other SCOTUS nominee on any sensitive topic regardless of which party nominated them. Anyone saying different is looking to enrage you to keep watching and clicking ($$) or looking for your vote and campaign donations. How exactly is SCOTUS taking power away from the government and giving it back to the people a “disservice to the Country”? It’s like the exact opposite of that.

  5. OMG
    Justice Neil Gorsuch’s mother Anne Gorsuch was the EPA administrator who gutted the EPA and he is carrying on the tradition…he should have recused himself….
    Anne Gorsuch based her administration of the EPA on the New Federalism approach of downsizing federal agencies by delegating their functions and services to the individual states. She believed that the EPA was over-regulating business and that the agency was too large and not cost-effective. During her 22 months as agency head, she cut the budget of the EPA by 22%, reduced the number of cases filed against polluters, relaxed Clean Air Act regulations, and facilitated the spraying of restricted-use pesticides. She cut the total number of agency employees, and hired staff from the industries they were supposed to be regulating. Environmentalists contended that her policies were designed to placate polluters, and accused her of trying to dismantle the agency.
    Thriftway Company, a small oil refinery in Farmington, New Mexico, asked Gorsuch for a meeting to discuss the regulations limiting lead content of gasoline, the program under Section 211 of the Clean Air Act designed to reduce the amount of lead in gasoline in annual phases, and to receive relief from the standard. In December 1981, while EPA was developing revisions to those regulation at the request of the Reagan Administration, Gorsuch met with representatives from the company, who asked her to excuse Thriftway from compliance with the lead limits because “the company faced financial ruin if it could not obtain quick relief from the regulations”. Gorsuch did not commit herself in writing but she did tell them they could count on her promise as the word of the EPA Administrator that she would not enforce the regulations.
    In 1982, Congress charged that the EPA had mishandled the $1.6 billion toxic waste Superfund by taking certain inappropriate and potentially illegal actions including withholding disbursements in order to affect a California political campaign. When Congress demanded records from Gorsuch, she refused and as a result became the first agency director in U.S. history to be cited for contempt of Congress
    The stand off ended in late February 1983, when Richard Hauser, the White House deputy counsel, confirmed one or more Reagan Administration officials had in fact reported to the White House that they had heard Gorsuch say at an Aug. 4 1982 luncheon that she was holding back more than $6 million in Federal funds to clean up the Stringfellow Acid Pits toxic waste site near Los Angeles to avoid helping the Senate campaign of former Gov. Jerry Brown of California, a Democrat.
    The White House then abandoned its court claim that the documents related to this incident could not be subpoenaed by Congress because they were covered by executive privilege and the EPA turned the documents over to Congress. Gorsuch immediately resigned her post effective March 3, 1983, citing pressures caused by the media and the congressional investigation.

  6. Trump Group Pays for Jan. 6 Lawyers, Raising Concerns of Witness Pressure
    The former president’s political organization and allies have paid for or promised to cover legal fees for witnesses, as the House inquiry suggests he is trying to influence testimonyhttps://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/30/us/trump-jan-6-lawyers-witness-pressure.html
    Donald Trump Could Be Illegally Tampering With Jan. 6 Witnesses, Legal Experts Say
    Former president Donald Trump and his associates could be criminally interfering with the House Jan. 6 committee, according to legal experts.
    Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) suggested at a hearing Tuesday that some witnesses have not testified as “fully and forthrightly” as others because of interference from Trump’s inner circle, citing two statements from witnesses.
    “What they said to me is, ‘As long as I continue to be a team player, they know that I’m on the team, I’m doing the right thing, I’m protecting who I need to protect, you know, I’ll continue to stay in good graces in Trump World,’” a witness told the committee.
    The messages could constitute obstruction of justice or tampering with a witness in an official proceeding. Kevin O’Brien, a former federal prosecutor, told HuffPost it would be illegal to try to affect witness testimony as the Jan. 6 committee investigates the Capitol riot.
    “Anything that would deflect from that course, if undertaken intentionally, is probably a crime,” said O’Brien, now a partner at white collar law firm, Ford O’Brien Landy LLP.

  7. SUN: Thank you for all of the detailed background information. That being said, the decision by the SCOTUS seems to be the law of the land now. Let’s move on to more important things, like the economy and the price of gasoline.

  8. This is another do your job! rebuke of Congress. Same as the Roe v Wade. get off your butts and craft national laws… that is why we call those people “lawmakers”. Take a stand, don’t outsource it to an entity with no enumated power to make national law. Don’t appeal to the most nebulous of the amendments (14th). Make law.
    That said, the states play an important role for the unique beliefs of their own residents.
    Take the recent Roe v Wade issue. Bet you are glad to live in CA, but imagine if the USA was 42 states strict no abortion ever but CA had its current laws. Everyone is CA would be full on supporters of states rights because a National law would probably restrict abortion under that scenario.
    There is a reason for the phrase :Tyranny of the majority. States rights is the antidote.
    National laws are very powerful though. Because people tend to want to find consensus. If National abortion law was cut off at 22 weeks with exceptions, even Mississippi might move towards that.
    State laws can move National law as well, look at Marijuana. Is it fast? No. Is it messy? Yes

  9. @BC actually the President can add Judges and balance decisions to better represent the majority of the population. This should strongly be considered as we are seeing an erosion to democracy, staying soft will only lead to more erosion like voting rights. Also the decision can be challenged by other cases.
    If Biden does not take a strong stance ahead of this, voting laws could be as restrictive as wanted or elections can be stolen… While no President wants to add Judges, the result of not doing such will lead to serious long lasting damage. The President need to stop playing catch up and get ahead of this or it will be like Roe V. Wade, EPA, Guns, etc….There are no checks and balances in the Supreme Court. We need a strong President like never before to take immediate action, thinking the repukes won’t do this will end up like RoeV. Wade.
    Supreme Court Will Hear Case On Radical Voting Rights Theory
    The Supreme Court will hear arguments in its fall 2022 session on whether state courts play any role in judging the constitutionality of election laws and legislative district maps passed by state legislatures.
    The case of Moore v. Harper is brought by Republicans in the North Carolina state legislature who claim that state courts have no say on whether the voting laws they write or the district maps they adopt are If the court accepts these arguments, it would wipe out the last remaining protection available against extreme partisan gerrymandering and greatly increase the ability of state’s to adopt highly restrictive voting laws.
    It could also play a role in any future attempt by presidential candidates to steal an election, as former President Donald Trump attempted in the 2020 election. Siding with the North Carolina Republicans could effectively give all electoral authority to state legislatures, including in the approval of the winner of the state’s Electoral College electors.unconstitutional under their state’s constitution.
    Supreme Court Will Hear Case On Radical Voting Rights Theory
    The Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to review an effort by Republican lawmakers in North Carolina to advance a sweeping legal theory that, if successful, could hand state legislatures broad new powers over how voting maps are drawn and federal elections conducted.

  10. The vile far-right evangelist extremist members of the court are making vile decisions. Time to indict Ginni Thomas for her role in overthrowing the government – and get Clarence impeached. The branches of government were suppose to have equal powers – yet this court is taking over for congress and the executive branch.

  11. The NY Times has an in depth article on this that I so recommend. It starts..The ruling limits the E.P.A.’s ability to restrict power plant emissions.
    The Supreme Court on Thursday limited the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to regulate carbon emissions from power plants, dealing a blow to the Biden administration’s efforts to address climate change. The vote was 6 to 3, with the court’s three liberal justices in dissent, saying that the majority had stripped the E.P.A. of “the power to respond to the most pressing environmental challenge of our time.”
    The decision was a blow to scientists who are continually frustrated by inaction on climate change. “It’s incredibly distressing because we just don’t have time to waste on this problem,” said Richard Seager, a climate scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. “The science is so firm on what we are heading into and the science is just being ignored.”

  12. Amy Barrett’s dad , Michael Coney, began his 29-year career as one of Royal Dutch Shell’s top attorneys.
    Her dad’s role in maximizing Shell’s net revenue from drilling grew even as Shell’s internal documents show it knew burning carbon was changing our climate and he even sought tax benefits from its efforts to adapt its drilling platforms to survive sea level rise and bigger storms resulting from climate change,” said Lisa Graves, executive director of the research company True North Research and a former chief counsel for nominations on the Senate Judiciary Committee…….
    WT#, more hell on earth thanks to the republican reptiles….
    The court says the EPA can’t make power plants switch to “sustainable energy” sources under the Clean Air Act.
    However, the decision could hinder all kinds of federal regulation going forward. It enshrines a new principle called the “major questions doctrine,” which says that federal agencies can’t make decisions about questions of major economic or political significance without specific, clear instructions from Congress. It’s up to courts to determine which questions are major enough to require this level of congressional guidance.
    That doctrine opens the door for challenges to regulations across US agencies — rules for healthcare, workplace safety, the financial sector, or telecommunications, for example. Challengers could argue that Congress, rather than the experts who work at federal agencies, should provide hyperspecific guidance on those topics.
    “We are a very complex society, and it is virtually impossible for Congress to address all those complexities down to the smallest detail in statute. So the argument against this is it would basically paralyze the federal government,” Lorenzen said.
    Indeed, the dissent from Justice Elena Kagan, signed by Stephen Breyer and Sonya Sotomayor, argued that the ruling could paralyze climate action.
    “The stakes here are high,” Kagan wrote, adding, “The Court appoints itself — instead of Congress or the expert agency — the decisionmaker on climate policy. I cannot think of many things more frightening.”

  13. Those same scientists who create the models showing apocalyptic climate change in the next decade also created models showing tens of millions of people were going to die from covid within the year.

  14. Sun: I see what you are saying and know that all things are possible. However, we have never had a POTUS who was a lame-duck president so early into their first term. This leaves him with little or no power, and certainly no one “fears” him either domestically or internationally. It’s the ol’ “Whaddaya gonna do” razzing that he is unfortunately facing. Instead of being more united, we are more divided than ever, and that’s not a good thing. Gotta focus on important things, not which bathroom to use, plastic straws, and so on.

  15. Sun, I think we all have to take the good with the bad, as they say. Sometimes things go “our” way, and at other times it does not. It’s the old yin and yang. I like vanilla ice cream with nuts/caramel/cherries/fudge sauce/etc., and others like chocolate with this and that and sprinkles. I can’t say which is better, but can tell you MY preference, but not tell someone else what their preference should be. I get it. I accept that we all have differing viewpoints, but in the end, we are all “family.” I am a calm person and don’t get riled up at all, but other people are not calm and become unhinged at things that for me are really nothing. Lucky me, I guess. My brother still won’t talk to me because he thinks I voted for Trump. I mean he is really worked up over it even after all these years….he is incapable of “letting it go.” So, although I don’t agree with his actions/reaction, I accept it. One day I hope he grows up and realizes that we only have so much time on this earth, and wasting that time filled with anger and hate is unhealthy.

  16. Ha Ha Hee Hee….pendulum swings both ways….we actually know squat about how the “Earth” works (the indigenous peoples know more)….’Science’ has been captured for quite some time now, as have the regulatory agencies ….and now the Supremes….

  17. I guess you must have missed the hateful speech coming from your side?
    Your folks don’t really love the planet, they just hate the other side. Wind and solar farms are blights. If you really loved the planet, you’d allow modern nuclear that could power everything all electric. But no…

  18. Nuclear power from fission is too slow to come on line, too expensive, and too dangerous. If you believe it’s the answer, you’ve been hoodwinked by the con/carbon propaganda campaign to delay and divert from the real solutions – solar, wind, geothermal, tidal, and other non-carbon renewables.

  19. BABYCAKES, the price of gas is NOT more important than our environment. Do you have offspring? Do you even CARE what kind of world they will be inheriting? We need climate action NOW, and this SCOTUS is off the rails with horrible disasterous decisions from regulating women’s bodies to this sh** show of a decision. IMPEACH THE COURT!

  20. 5:54 – Funny, then, that all the IPCC climate predictions have so far proven to be too optimistic. And just what is the link between climatology and epidemiology you are proposing? Like apples to oranges, by any measure.

  21. FEWTILE, It’s difficult for me to even reply to your comment it is so asinine, but here we are. Scientists know a whole heck of a lot about how the Earth works, and we are responsible for trying to reverse the massive damage we have done to our earth as a species. The time is NOW and the stakes are HIGH. Do you have kids? If so, do you CARE about the planet they will be inheriting from us? Time to ACT. This SCOTUS has got to GO! Our planet, our democracy (and our decency) has never been in such peril!

  22. Time and time again the repukes create hardships and use the courts to abuse
    Mitch McConnell’s new hostage threat
    Republicans won’t back compromise legislation to boost domestic semiconductor manufacturing and U.S. competitiveness with China if Democrats continue to negotiate a partisan budget package that can pass without GOP support, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday.
    The point of the measure — the “United States Innovation and Competition Act” (USICA), though it’s gone by a few different names — is to make Americans less dependent on foreign manufacturing, especially in high tech. Some have even characterized this as a national security issue. It’s how this became a rare effort that’s intended to address a concern Democrats and Republicans take seriously.
    It’s why the House and Senate both passed versions of the bill, sending the issue to a conference committee that began work in April on merging the competing measures into one final package. Most Capitol Hill observers agreed that USICA was likely to pass before the fall elections.
    McConnell’s unexpected tweet was effectively a shot across the bow: The Senate Republican leader is prepared to throw away a year’s worth of work, derailing a bill his own party takes seriously, unless Democrats abandon their budget reconciliation bill.
    And at this point, some of you are now also asking, “There’s a Democratic budget reconciliation bill?” The short answer is no, but after the Build Back Better effort was left for dead months ago, there’s been significant progress of late on a new bill that would focus on, among other things, lowering prescription drug costs.
    Wisconsin’s conservative high court hands GOP another weapon
    Wisconsin’s conservative-controlled Supreme Court handed Republicans their newest weapon to weaken any Democratic governors in the battleground state, ruling this week that political appointees don’t have to leave their posts until the Senate confirms their successor.
    The court’s decision — in the case of a conservative who refused to step down from an environmental policy board for more than a year after his term expired — marks another loss for Democratic Gov. Tony Evers as he faces reelection in November. Republicans have worked to reduce Evers’ powers since even before he took office and have refused to confirm many of his appointees. This week’s ruling gives them the ability to block them simply by declining to hold a nomination vote.
    “Most people on the street would say when a term … expires, there’s an opening. The Supreme Court has said that commonsense understanding is not right,” University of Wisconsin-Madison political science professor Barry Burden said. The ruling “raises the question of why is there a term at all? Maybe we just say a person serves for life the way a U.S. Supreme Court justice does.”

  23. Republican Senator McConnell blocked confirmation of a judge who should have been a supreme court justice on the basis of ‘too close to election’ to give his choice of president the opportunity to fill a slot that shouldn’t have been a vacancy. The same guy allowed president to pack the high court with people that president thought were bent and would protect him and others so much closer to the end of his term that the candidates could not be fully investigated. Witnesses were not allowed to testify. The candidates lied about their intentions/beliefs at the confirmation hearings. On this basis and the basis of the ex-president’s behavior, all the candidates he chose on the basis of giving himself untouchable status should investigated more thoroughly and reconfirmed or not.

  24. BigUglySticks: No need to make this about me, because it certainly is not about me. Some people just want baby food for their children. Some people want to get to work without it having to put their families in the poor house. For many people, the past couple of years in the US have been financially horrific, and simply don’t have a moment to spend worrying about single-use plastic bags. They are worried about brown-outs, and don’t care if the power grid is lacking because the wind isn’t blowing or the sun isn’t shining. People who have never been poor do not understand how difficult it can be when someone says you can’t feed your baby or even you should never have had that baby to begin with. Things like that.
    Have some compassion for those who are struggling with real life, and not vilify them simply because they want to make it to the next day. Not everyone has savings. Not everyone has a 401k that they can draw from. Not everyone has a high-paying job. But, we are all on this planet together, so reach out and help your fellow human beings and tone down the “outrage” and complete meltdowns over nothingburgers all the time. We will all benefit from that alone my good friends.

  25. As-in-nine… judges… BIG UGLY..Ssshtick ta yur guns….we ARE damaging the Earth, but she has tremendous restorative powers, more than you or I can imagine, and SHE will set things straight (see George Carlin on the subject ). BTW I do have children and all be well, because it always is. (also BTW, you probably still believe in ‘fossil’ fuel (scientific concept/ theory)even after the Deepwater Horizon ecological disaster….they were drilling more than 4 mi. deep (see Thomas Gold ‘The Deep Hot Biosphere”)

  26. G. Tree & Big Ugly….You all should be more worried by this Administration leading us into depression and WWIII ….This ‘dent’ in the administrative state is WAY overdue, you pumpkins! Biden’s the one that needs impeached. Sides…they just did it to rile ya 🙂

  27. We didn’t get our way so we’re going to change the rules…… without a thought or care about what happens when the other side gains control at some point in the future. Them changing filibuster rules previously is what allowed the current make up of SCOTUS.

  28. It’s scientifically ludicrous for the EPA to classify carbon dioxide as a “pollutant”. The carbon dioxide molecule is essential for life, and it is just as important as the water molecule and the oxygen molecule. Without CO2, H2O, and O2 life as we know it would not exist. Nearly every atom of carbon in our bodies originated as a carbon dioxide molecule from the atmosphere. To vilify carbon dioxide as a death molecule which will destroy all things and therefore must be eradicated is scientifically wrong.

  29. By adding “more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere than the ocean can absorb”, people are supercharging the natural greenhouse effect, causing global temperature to rise and creating extreme weather like severe droughts, severe fires, severe floods etc…. According to observations by the NOAA Global Monitoring Lab, in 2021 carbon dioxide alone was responsible for about two-thirds of the total heating influence of all human-produced greenhouse gases.
    Carbon cycle experts estimate that natural “sinks”—processes that remove carbon from the atmosphere—on land and in the ocean absorbed the equivalent of about half of the carbon dioxide we emitted each year in the 2011-2020 decade. Because we put “more carbon dioxide” into the atmosphere “than natural processes can remove”, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases every year. This leads to Ocean acidification !

  30. For that matter protecting all our carbon sinks like, oceans, forest, soils, wetlands, eco systms etc is vital. It is a free system that helps manage and balance life. The problem is that like a house, a car, a building, a business or product etc which has a monetary value” “no monetary value” is placed on Nature. It’s value is for greater then the richest person, the richest company, or all the GDP put together around the world. It is not until it becomes destroyed that value is recognized…like when you run out of potable water and can not survive, when the air is so polluted you can not breathe, or when the soil is so depleted you can not grow food!

  31. Including Rivers, lakes, streams to oceans, forests, wetlands, eco systems, flora and fauna all need strong protects …Taking away powers from the EPA to protect these resources is Not legally sound. The Court is biased in their decision and it not for the good. They could have found a case to support what the EPA was doing to restrict C02 emissions but that was not their Mandate by those who put them in power. Their Mandate was to benefit the fossil fuel industry at all cost period. Everyone can see the blatant abuse of power!

  32. The majority tend to agree….
    Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Elizabeth Warren, and others the Supreme Court faces a ‘legitimacy crisis’
    “Our planet is on fire, and this extremist Supreme Court has destroyed the federal government’s ability to fight back,” tweeted Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, following Thursday’s blow to regulating greenhouse gas emissions. “This radical Supreme Court is increasingly facing a legitimacy crisis, and we can’t let them have the last word.”
    After the Court overturned the landmark abortion-rights case, Roe v. Wade, New York Democrat Ocasio-Cortez tweeted that two justices stand “very credibly accused of sexual assault,” an apparent reference to assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh and harassment allegations against Clarence Thomas, “and that’s the tip of the iceberg.”
    She slammed Thomas’s wife Ginni for participatingin former President Donald Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally on January 6 and for Thomas siding with Trump in his bid to keep some presidential documents from the House committee investigating the Capitol riot. “This is a crisis of legitimacy and President Biden must address that,” Ocasio-Cortez said on Meet the Press.
    Progressives have been seeking an expansion of the conservative-dominated Court along with ethics and anti-corruption reforms. They say the Court is unaccountable because its members are unelected, and that five justices were nominated by Republican presidents who lost the popular vote. They say one seat was “stolen” because Senate Republicans denied a hearing for Obama nominee, Merrick Garland, now the US Attorney General.
    “Its legitimacy gone, the Court should take up residence with the RNC, which defines its agenda,”

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