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View Diary: In Major Decision to Benefit Climate Change Mitigation;SCOTUS Rejects Challenge to EPA Authority (73 comments)

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  •  Thanks for this report, beach babe. THis is very, (23+ / 0-)

    very good news.

    I keep thinking about soot, a major forcer of glacial melt in the Himalayas, thereby threatening the water supply for the entire Indian subcontinent.  Among other examples.  So it's great to hear the US is actively supporting efforts to mitigate ozone, soot, and methane.  And that the Supremes aren't going to take away any more tools in this vital effort -- at least not right now.

    THe back-door approach is something progressives should be more aware of.  Obama has been taking that approach a lot on environmental issues since early in his first term, when it became clear that a carbon-cap system wasn't going to pass Congress.  

    --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

    by Fiona West on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 09:28:55 AM PDT

    •  exactly, the more progressives know about (16+ / 0-)

      these back door initiatives, the more we can give them much needed support. Not to say we should stop fighting for comprehensive climate change legislation but we lose precious time if that's all we do.

      THe back-door approach is something progressives should be more aware of.  Obama has been taking that approach a lot on environmental issues since early in his first term, when it became clear that a carbon-cap system wasn't going to pass Congress.  

      Macca's Meatless Monday

      by VL Baker on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 09:33:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you for this excellent diary, beach babe. (10+ / 0-)

        I disagree with your second poster that the EPA"...isn't worthy of its name". If not for the EPA, nothing would be done because  NO pro-environment legislation would pass.

        While I, too, want more...and more quickly, we have to celebrate and support every incremental step. The wingers hate the EPA with a passion and hence the EPA is always trying to straddle the line of what they can do before this crappy conservative SCOTUS actually takes a case.

      •  There is no "back door initiative" (0+ / 0-)

        What you're doing is trying to create a conflation that somehow a NO2 NAAQS decision addresses climate and
        climate change mitigation.

        No one who knows anything about the Clean Air Act and the process of setting NAAQS health standards would agree with your approach, which isn't an exercise in air quality science.

        I would describe the entire exercise of what you're trying to do in this diary as scientific misconduct.

    •  This decision does not have anything at all (0+ / 0-)

      to do with actions to "mitigate ozone, soot, and methane" as you say it does.

      While NO2 is an ozone and PM 2.5 precursor, nothing about setting a NO2 National Ambient Air Quality Standard has anything at all to do with emission control actions to address ozone, PM 2.5 and methane.

      Setting health standards for community ambient air pollution are not actions that directly cause emission reductions.   Nothing about the NO2 NAAQS standard imposes control action responsibilities on existing sources.

      •  It is about rules written by the EPA (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        elwior, Just Bob, MRA NY

        The challenge was to the EPA's authority to write rules that it finds appropriate to fulfill its mission.

        I think this is at least a temporary win; it may be years before the EPA writes another rule, and it gets litigated to the Supreme Court.

        The EPA can now go ahead and develop CO2 rules, and there will be a legal precedent defending its process.

        •  You said: (0+ / 0-)
          "The challenge was to the EPA's authority to write rules that it finds appropriate to fulfill its mission."
          NOPE.....the petitioners were not challenging EPA's authority to write NAAQS standards.  The petitioners were denying that the scientific evidence of NO2 health effects justified the EPA finding made on the ambient concentration level of the standard.   That is not a challenge to EPA's authority to write NAAQS standards which is clearly and unambiguously written into the Clean Air Act at 42 U.S.C. Sec. 7409.

          You said:

          "I think this is at least a temporary win; it may be years before the EPA writes another rule, and it gets litigated to the Supreme Court."
          NOPE.....this is a permanent win for public health and API permanently lost.   The NO2 NAAQS standard went into effect on February 9, 2010.  Nothing about the Supreme Court denial of cert changed any of that and this decision is thus FINAL.

          You said:

          "The EPA can now go ahead and develop CO2 rules, and there will be a legal precedent defending its process."
          NOPE.....Your statement is all wrong because EPA previously had its authority to write CO2 rules challenged in a case years ago and the Supreme Court found that EPA was authorized to write CO2 control rules under the provisions of the Clean Air Act.   Subsequently, EPA enacted air pollution control rules covering CO2 and CO2 equivalents in New Source Review permitting and with New Source Performance Standards for CO2 emissions.
          •  This is about process... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            elwior

            And a much longer view...

            LS said:

            NOPE.....the petitioners were not challenging EPA's authority to write NAAQS standards.  The petitioners were denying that the scientific evidence of NO2 health effects justified the EPA finding made on the ambient concentration level of the standard.   That is not a challenge to EPA's authority to write NAAQS standards which is clearly and unambiguously written into the Clean Air Act at 42 U.S.C. Sec. 7409.
            The decision establishes the assumption that the process within the EPA to vet the science is adequate in relation to all its regulations, existing and future. I agree this is great news on the NO2 issue at hand, but the bigger news is that the EPA's decision-making process was successfully defended. The bad news is that this is not nearly as good as winning on the merits at the Supreme Court.

            LS said:

            NOPE.....this is a permanent win for public health and API permanently lost.   The NO2 NAAQS standard went into effect on February 9, 2010.  Nothing about the Supreme Court denial of cert changed any of that and this decision is thus FINAL.
            As I said above, great news on the NO2. However, while this precedent can now be used for support in any Federal Court,  it is only binding in whatever jurisdictions are subordinate to the lower court that wrote the decision. A case from another area of the country could rise up through the court system, get to the Supreme Court and cause this lower court's decision to be overturned. This is only permanent till the other side gets another case to the Supreme Court.

            LS said:

            NOPE.....Your statement is all wrong because EPA previously had its authority to write CO2 rules challenged in a case years ago and the Supreme Court found that EPA was authorized to write CO2 control rules under the provisions of the Clean Air Act.   Subsequently, EPA enacted air pollution control rules covering CO2 and CO2 equivalents in New Source Review permitting and with New Source Performance Standards for CO2 emissions.
            And now, if, using their internal review process as defended in this case, the EPA determines some other, perhaps more restrictive measure is appropriate, it has the weight of this decision behind it.

            A denial of cert does not mean the area of law is settled, and if the Court rules in another case in a way damaging to the precedent set here, a new action on the rule could kill it.

            •  You said: (0+ / 0-)
              "this is about process ....and a much longer view"
              NOPE....the DC Circuit decision on the NO2 NAAQS  didn't have anything to do with the process or authority.   The petitioners were under an obligation on appeal to show legal error, a clearly erroneous determination or abuse of discretion.   Those judges on the DC Circuit were solely concerned with that because that is the review standard on appeal.   They were not there to address a 'longer view'

              You said:

              "The decision establishes the assumption that the process within the EPA to vet the science is adequate in relation to all its regulations, existing and future. I agree this is great news on the NO2 issue at hand, but the bigger news is that the EPA's decision-making process was successfully defended."
              NOPE.....the DC Circuit was not reviewing the "process within the EPA to vet the science"    They reviewed the scientific record and did not find any clearly erroneous scientific decision that would justify granting petitioners request.    The Supremes refusal of cert does not have any precedent value.

              You said:

              "As I said above, great news on the NO2. However, while this precedent can now be used for support in any Federal Court,  it is only binding in whatever jurisdictions are subordinate to the lower court that wrote the decision. A case from another area of the country could rise up through the court system, get to the Supreme Court and cause this lower court's decision to be overturned. This is only permanent till the other side gets another case to the Supreme Court."
              NOPE.....This is all completely wrong.  All challenges to the establishment of national primary health-related NAAQS standards are required to be brought in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals as a matter of law.   See 42 U.S.C. Sec 7607(b)(1).   Any challenge brought in another circuit would be rapidly dismissed.
              •  Starting to think you're being paid... (0+ / 0-)

                ...to be obtuse.

                The EPA's decision-making cleared the hurdle of not being a

                "clearly erroneous determination or abuse of discretion."
                This is a win because it says the EPA is trying to use science knowledge properly to inform policy. It is not a huge win because it did not come from the Supreme Court.

                LS said:

                They were not there to address a 'longer view'
                They of course addressed a longer view; it approaches silly to argue judges do not anticipate impacts of their decisions.

                LS said:

                NOPE.....the DC Circuit was not reviewing the "process within the EPA to vet the science"    They reviewed the scientific record and did not find any clearly erroneous scientific decision that would justify granting petitioners request.    The Supremes refusal of cert does not have any precedent value.
                I doubt it, and if the Circuit Court did that, they are horses asses. The Court does not have the background necessary to review the scientific record and then stand in judgement of an agency's use of that record; if that is in fact what they have done, they fucked up.

                And the refusal of cert means the lower court decision stands as precedent within the jurisdiction of the court that wrote it.

                LS said:

                All challenges to the establishment of national primary health-related NAAQS standards are required to be brought in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals as a matter of law.   See 42 U.S.C. Sec 7607(b)(1).  
                You may have me here, don't care. It may settle this case in the time frame you care about, but the case law is likely to develop over time, and this decision could be overturned.
                •  You said: (0+ / 0-)
                  "I'm beginning to think you're being paid ......to be obtuse"
                  NOPE   I'm not being "paid" and I'm not being "obtuse"

                  I'm presently doing what I consider to be pro bono work that is expected of me for professional ethics as an air pollution control professional and emeritus member of the Air & Waste Management Association and as a 37 year steward of the Federal Clean Air Act.  

                  From your comment above I'm not sure you understand what appellate courts do and I suggest you read the Clean Air Act, the Federal Administrative Procedures Act and the Federal Rules on appellate procedure.   After that, go read specific SC and DC circuit decision on the NAAQS provisions of the Clean Air Act, and then consider revising your view of what reality is.

                  Finally, 42 U.S.C. Sec 7607(b)(1) is not a court decision and all federal litigants challenging a NAAQS standard setting decision would necessarily have to cite this statute in any court filings on a complaint against EPA concerning an agency decision in a final rule publishing a new or revised NAAQS standard.

                  •  Pro bono (0+ / 0-)

                    LS said:

                    NOPE   I'm not being "paid" and I'm not being "obtuse"
                    I'm presently doing what I consider to be pro bono work that is expected of me for professional ethics as an air pollution control professional and emeritus member of the Air & Waste Management Association and as a 37 year steward of the Federal Clean Air Act.
                    I wouldn't bother. Mostly you're irritating the shit out of people who should be your allies.
                    •  I don't consider acts of conflation and error (0+ / 0-)

                      to be the basis of any kind of valid alliance.   Anti-science conduct in the form of propagating conflations that have nothing to do with objective reality is not and cannot be the basis of valid conservation science stewardship on behalf of environmental progress.....in fact, such error and conflation directly impedes making such progress.

                       

                      •  Like I said... (0+ / 0-)

                        You are condescending to an extreme; in some areas, you have very specific subject matter expertise that might have serious value if you were not irritating the shit out of those you should be educating.

                        In other areas, such as the role of appellate courts, your'e still condescending to an extreme, but I don't think your opinion is any more valid than the next 27 bloggers who chime in here at the Kos, including me.

                        I'm done here, I don't want to see how well I can irritate the shit out of you.

                        Have a nice day.

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