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WASHINGTON ALERT


Stephanie Salmon, AFS Washington Office; Jeff Hannapel & Christian Richter, The Policy Group, Washington, D.C. Supreme Court to Hear Clean Air Act Cases ARGUMENTS WILL FOCUS ON PERMITTING FOR STATIONARY SOURCES IN GREENHOUSE GAS REGULATIONS.


Te U.S. Supreme Court agreed Oct. 15 to hear arguments on whether the Environ- mental Protection Agency overstepped its authority in developing carbon emissions limits for establishments such as factories and power plants. Te court is limiting argument to whether the EPA’s greenhouse gas regulations for vehicles necessarily trigger Clean Air Act permitting require- ments for stationary sources as well. Other challenges to EPA’s regulations, including the endangerment finding, were denied. Te Supreme Court has previously


ruled the EPA has the authority to regu- late greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act, but granting a hearing in these lawsuits will give the court an op- portunity to clarify those decisions. Several attorneys said the Supreme


Court’s ruling is not likely to impact the EPA’s authority to issue carbon dioxide performance standards for fossil fuel-


fired power plants. A ruling against the EPA could eliminate the need for stationary indus- trial sources such as power plants and petroleum refineries to obtain prevention of significant deterioration and Title V operating permits for their greenhouse gas emissions. Industry groups challeng- ing the regulations have argued the EPA should have interpreted the permitting requirements to apply only to the six criteria pollutants subject to national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). Tat would have eliminated the need for the agency to issue its tailoring rule, which limited greenhouse gas permitting to the largest stationary sources. Tough the Supreme Court may find


that greenhouse gas emissions by them- selves do not trigger requirements to obtain Clean Air Act permits, many of the same industrial sources could be required to


obtain the permits for their greenhouse gases once they exceed the thresholds for other pollutants. U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh acknowledged that issue when he dissented in the


26 | MODERN CASTING November 2013


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