ERCC Statement on DC Circuit Court’s Vacating of CSAPR

August 21, 2012

Scott Segal, director of the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council, offered the following statement on the occasion of the DC Circuit Court’s vacating of the Cross State Air Pollution Rule, or CSAPR.  ERCC is a coalition of utilities and energy companies that works on clean air policy issues:

“Today, a panel of the DC Circuit Federal Court of Appeals decided to strike down the EPA Cross State Air Pollution Rule, or CSAPR.  The ruling leaves the previous Clean Air Interstate Rule in place.  Along with other provisions of the Clean Air Act, the existing rule ensures adequate protections remain in place to handle interstate air pollution.

But the importance of the ruling cannot be overstated.  The court was clear in finding that EPA had overstepped its legal authority in developing  the rule.  EPA had violated a key principle underlying the Clean Air Act – cooperative federalism.  Not only in this interstate rule case, but also in regional haze rules, consideration of implementation plans, and in permitting decisions, EPA has not showed sufficient respect or deference to state programs.  Today’s decision is a stern warning against EPA’s recent views.

The fair and appropriate regulation of electric power production in the United States is no mere academic exercise.  When the EPA takes liberties with its legal authority, the result is higher prices for consumers, businesses, schools and hospitals.  At a time of economic recession, the country cannot afford sloppy rulemaking of this sort.  The EPA can and should do better.”