N.Y. AG wants to defend EPA settlement against West Virginia's lawsuit

By Bryan Cohen | Sep 3, 2014

NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced on Tuesday that his office filed a motion to intervene in a court challenge to a 2010 settlement agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Schneiderman, who is leading a coalition of 11 states, New York City and the District of Columbia, filed the motion to intervene in the challenge to an EPA settlement that committed the agency to adopt greenhouse gas emissions standards for new and existing fossil fuel electric generating power plants. A 12-state coalition led by West Virginia and other coal-producing states is challenging the 2010 settlement.

“From extreme droughts to extreme storms, we’re already seeing impacts associated with uncontrolled climate change across the country – and we must rise to meet its challenge with all the urgency it demands,” Schneiderman said. “Effectively combating climate change requires every state to play by the same set of rules and to do their fair share. I am proud to lead this coalition of states and to put New York at the forefront of this effort.”

Under the terms of the 2010 settlement, the EPA agreed to a schedule for proposing and taking final action on regulating greenhouse gas emissions from new and existing power plants. The challenge from the West Virginia-led coalition came after the EPA began its rulemaking process for two rules to establish greenhouse gas emissions standards for power plants. The coalition filed a lawsuit that challenged the EPA's commitments to limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

Schneiderman's coalition - which includes Massachusetts, Washington, Vermont, Rhode Island, Oregon, New Mexico, Maine, Delaware, Connecticut, California, the city of New York and the District of Columbia - filed a motion disputing the West Virginia claims and seeks to ensure the EPA encounters no further delays in finalizing the rules.

According to the EPA, implementing the power plant rules by 2030 would lead to between $55 billion and $93 billion in public health and climate benefits.

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City of New York New York Attorney General U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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