TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – August 12, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is leading 16 other attorneys general in a legal action against the United States Environmental Protection Agency for illegally invalidating the individual air quality protection plans in those states. In June, the EPA issued a final rule requiring 35 states, including Florida, to revise their individual State Implementation Plans governing carbon emissions during power plant Startup, Shutdown or Malfunction.
“We will not step aside while the EPA, through heavy-handed federal overreach, threatens to upend a system that the EPA has approved multiple times and has provided a consistent, reliable framework to safely provide electricity to millions of Floridians across the state; furthermore, the agency’s action could result in higher utility bills for Florida consumers,” said Attorney General Bondi.
The Clean Air Act establishes a cooperative-federalism approach to regulating the nation’s air quality and dictates that EPA has the primary responsibility to identify air pollutants that pose a threat to public health and to set national air quality standards; however, the Act gives states the primary responsibility to determine how to achieve those standards.
For decades, states have ensured compliance with the standards set for power plant SSM through their individual SIPs. The adoption and adherence to Florida’s SIP has helped to tremendously and measurably improve the state’s air quality.
The EPA’s final rule illegally requiring the states to change their previously approved SIPs, came after the agency agreed to settle a lawsuit. The EPA’s imprudent rush to settle the matter has led the agency to adopt an illegal final rule that is in conflict with the Clean Air Act and imposes on Florida’s right to determine the most effective strategy for achieving air quality standards.
Today, Attorney General Bondi filed the petition for review in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit asking the Court to review the EPA’s final rule. Besides the clear violation of state’s rights enumerated in the Clean Air Act, the final rule also stands to stall or reverse progress the plaintiffs have made in improving the quality of the air in their state.
To view the petition click here.
Contact: Whitney Ray
Phone: (850) 245-0150