Press Release
For Immediate Release
January 24, 2008
 
Contact: Robyn Ziegler
312-814-3118
rziegler@atg.state.il.us
 

MADIGAN JOINS ATTORNEYS GENERAL TO DEMAND EPA ACT ON SUPREME COURT GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS RULING

Nine Months Since Court Ruled Agency Should Develop Regulations

“I am appalled that absolutely nothing has been done in the nine months since the Supreme Court ruled in Massachusetts v. EPA that the Agency has the authority now to deal with this critical component of climate change,” Madigan said. 

In the letter, Madigan and the other attorneys general request that Johnson respond by February 27, 2008, or face possible legal action regarding his agency’s specific intentions for moving forward.  The letter also was signed by environmental representatives of Baltimore and New York City.

The EPA had maintained that under the Clean Air Act, it did not have sufficient statutory authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.  But in its April 2, 2007, ruling, the Court ruled that EPA had relied on improper policy to deny a rulemaking petition and it ordered the agency to revisit the petition filed by Illinois, Massachusetts and 10 other states and environmental organizations based on proper statutory factors. 

In the letter, the attorneys general point to EPA’s statements before Congress that the agency would propose new regulations by the end of 2007, with final regulations in place by October of this year.  Madigan and others are seeking a clear statement from EPA that greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles and other sources “cause, or contribute to, air pollution.”

Madigan’s letter follows other recent actions, joining with her colleagues nationwide to force environmental action by the federal government. 

  • Earlier this month, Madigan joined 14 other states in filing a Motion to Intervene in California’s Petition for Review of EPA’s refusal to grant California’s request for a waiver so that it could enact tougher pollution standards for car emissions than those of the federal government.

  • In November 2007, Madigan and 11 other attorneys general filed suit against the EPA seeking a reversal of new regulations that, among other things, would allow thousands of companies to avoid disclosing to the public the toxic chemicals they use, store and release into the environment.

  • Also in November 2007, Madigan joined the attorneys general of five other states in signing a letter to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Dale E. Klein expressing concern with that agency’s failure to update its relicensing procedures for older nuclear power stations.

Joining Illinois in the letter to EPA Administrator Johnson are: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.  All of these states, along with the cities of Baltimore and New York City, were either petitioners in Massachusetts v. EPA, or joined amicus briefs in support of the petitioners.

Senior Assistant Attorney General Gerald Karr is handling the matter for Madigan’s Environmental Bureau.

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