A lawsuit against the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to regulate CO2 emissions from cars is now in the Supreme Court. Its outcome could greatly influence the way the US tackles climate change.
12 States, several large cities including New York, and environmental organisations sued the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to regulate greenhouse emissions from cars. Massachusetts Attorney-General Tom Reilly leads the case on their behalf. The defendants, besides EPA, include the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers and the National Automobile Dealers Association. This might become a precedent for environmental efforts being decided through the Courts, and hence could set a new framework in the fight against Global Warming in the US. The US Supreme Court accepted the file in June. All the necessary material has been sent by the parties early September. Background Originally a petition requesting EPA to regulate CO2 from vehicles, as is the case for mercury or sulphur dioxide, it started as an appeal in a district court. The EPA argues that the main US law regarding air pollution- the Clean Air Act-, does not give it specific authority to regulate greenhouse gases emitted by vehicles. States and environmental groups, however, claim that it is the agency's task to set limits on cars' CO2 emissions.