North Dakota v. EPA (Power Plants)

Date: October 23rd, 2015

Topic: Climate Change Mitigation

Type: Defense of Federal Standards

Jurisdiction: California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington

Citation: North Dakota v. EPA, No. 15-1381 (D.C. Cir. 2015)

A group of 18 states and 2 cities intervened in a lawsuit to defend EPA’s new source performance standards (NSPS) for carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil fuel-fired power plants. The NSPS establishes an emission standard for new coal-fired power plants which reflects EPA’s determination that these plants can use carbon capture and storage (CCS) to capture a fraction of the CO2 emissions. State and industry petitioners challenged the NSPS, their primary contention being that CCS is not an adequately demonstrated technology and the emission standards for coal-fired power plants are therefore unlawful.

The state defendant-intervenors filed a brief explaining why CCS is adequately demonstrated and the NSPS is both lawful and necessary. Oral arguments at the D.C. Circuit are scheduled for April 2017.

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