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Old 06-23-2014, 05:58 PM  
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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As it turns out, it's constitutional for the EPA to do their job.

With one minor exception.

So says the most conservative SCOTUS in all of our lifetimes. Seven of them signed onto that conclusion.

The EPA can regulate greenhouse gases. They can require industry to adapt the best available technology. They can apply their rules vigorously to factories and power plants. They can impose heftier regulations on "upwind" states, whose pollution affects "downwind" states.

It's a call to let the free market flow freely, with the most effective governmental regulation possible.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politi...2d4_story.html

Supreme Court: EPA can regulate greenhouse gas emissions, with some limits
BY ROBERT BARNES
June 23 at 12:41 PM

The Supreme Court on Monday mostly validated the Environmental Protection Agency’s plans to regulate power plant and factory emissions of greenhouse gases blamed for global warming while imposing some limits on the agency’s reach.

The justices said the EPA could not rewrite specific standards written into the law, but they still handed the Obama administration and environmentalists a big victory by agreeing there was another way for the EPA to carry out its program.

“EPA is getting almost everything it wanted in this case,” Justice Antonin Scalia said from the bench, in announcing the decision. “It sought to regulate sources that it said were responsible for 86 percent of all the greenhouse gases emitted from stationary sources nationwide. Under our holdings, EPA will be able to regulate sources responsible for 83 percent of those emissions.”

The decision concerns rules separate from the EPA’s proposed more comprehensive plans released earlier this month to cut carbon emissions from existing plants by as much as 25 percent over 15 years.

“Today is a good day for all supporters of clean air and public health and those concerned with creating a better environment for future generations,” the EPA said in a statement.

Perhaps of more value than the specific case, the court reinforced its view that the Clean Air Act gives the agency the ability to regulate greenhouse gases. Sean H. Donahue, who represented environmental agencies in the case, said the decision makes clear that seven of the nine justices hold that view.

“It’s settled law,” he said.

The bottom line that the EPA got much of what it wanted contrasted with rhetoric in Scalia’s opinion that suggested a power grab.

He said that emissions of greenhouse gases alone are not enough to trigger EPA enforcement — that would sweep in too many small sources, such as schools, churches and shopping centers, Scalia said.

The EPA agreed with that.

But Scalia said the EPA cannot resolve the problem by simply rewriting the specific standards written into the law. An agency does not have power to “revise clear statutory terms that turn out not to work in practice,” he wrote.

But the majority of the court still found a way for the EPA program to work.

Scalia said the agency can impose the greenhouse gas regulations on facilities that are already regulated under the EPA’s Prevention of Significant Deterioration program. That program requires the facilities to install the best available technology to control emissions from all regulated pollutants.

The court’s liberal justices agreed with that part of the decision, but they would have deferred to the EPA’s ability to make the statute work.

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. said they disagreed that the agency had clear power to address greenhouse gases.

The EPA was challenged by industry groups, the Chamber of Commerce and a number of states, led by Texas.

“Today, the Supreme Court largely upheld EPA’s approach to focusing Clean Air Act permits on only the largest stationary sources of greenhouse gases such as power plants, refineries, and other types of industrial facilities,” the EPA said in its statement. “The Supreme Court’s decision is a win for our efforts to reduce carbon pollution because it allows EPA, states and other permitting authorities to continue to require carbon pollution limits in permits for the largest pollution sources.”
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Old 06-23-2014, 06:20 PM   #2
HonestChieffan HonestChieffan is offline
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Congress needs to write the rules and require more oversight and controls on the EPA
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Old 06-23-2014, 11:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
Congress needs to write the rules and require more oversight and controls on the EPA
One thing which I completely agree with you about. The EPA is an incredibly vital, but notably flawed organization. They do more harm than good, but it should demand considerable oversight considering the long term nature of its policies.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:04 AM   #4
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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Originally Posted by Fish View Post
One thing which I completely agree with you about. The EPA is an incredibly vital, but notably flawed organization. They do more harm than good, but it should demand considerable oversight considering the long term nature of its policies.
So isn't the rest of the govt. Time for the people to use their oversight and vote some politicians out.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:55 AM   #5
Xanathol Xanathol is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
So says the most conservative SCOTUS in all of our lifetimes.
The EPA needs to look into whatever you're smoking...
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Old 06-24-2014, 01:11 AM   #6
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xanathol View Post
The EPA needs to look into whatever you're smoking...
Name a more conservative SCOTUS in our lifetimes.
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:02 AM   #7
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The article in the OP is the MOST favorable spin on the opinion possible for the EPA.

The Court's opinion says that the EPA does not have the right to re-write statutes to say what they think they should say.

This was a 5-4 conservative majority opinion and Scalia wrote the opinion. The EPA thought the law as written by Congress would not be broad enough, so they simply changed the regulations on their own. The EPA argued that they'd been interpreting the law this way for 34 years, as if that were a statue. The Court ruled that the EPA does not have the power to do that.

It came out of an earlier ruling about the Clean Air Act which did not regulate "greenhouse gasses" as pollution, but the EPA unilaterally decided that they were. In part what they did was try to apply fuel efficiency standards that apply to businesses for things like vehicles, to things like power plants. They wanted to start including the production of CO2 as a "pollutant" which would have basically put every business in violation of the Clean Air Act.

The Court ruled that the EPA could not unilaterally change the statutory provisions. There was a memorable grilling earlier this year by Samuel Alito of the Solicitor General where he asked for any example of a government agency rewriting statues that had hard numbers and standards and the government's side couldn't provide any.
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:10 AM   #8
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If someone were 90-100 years old, their SCOTUS would have been more conservative.
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
The Court ruled that the EPA could not unilaterally change the statutory provisions. There was a memorable grilling earlier this year by Samuel Alito of the Solicitor General where he asked for any example of a government agency rewriting statues that had hard numbers and standards and the government's side couldn't provide any.
I was a little nervous about Alito's selection as a justice by Bush. He is conservative, but he is a very logically rigorous thinker, more so than anyone else on this court.

I tend to agree with most of the dissents or opinions he authors, and he tends to wind up in agreement a lot with Breyer on the less politically ideological issues, which I think make for good readings when they occur.
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:17 AM   #10
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"The Court's opinion says that the EPA does not have the right to re-write statutes to say what they think they should say. "

Exactly...and that has always been my problem with most departments under the executive branch. They try and write their own laws and it's dogshit.
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:26 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Xanathol View Post
The EPA needs to look into whatever you're smoking...
I agree that it's the most conservative court in our lifetimes. The fact that it's pretty evenly split between conservatives and liberals and that the liberals are, if anything, more reliably liberal than the conservatives are reliably conservative, illustrates how low that threshold really is. We spent decades with a very liberal court and now we're on the cusp of having a conservative one if we can survive the rest of Obama's term and elect a Republican in 2016.

BTW, this is the most important reason for our purity conservatives and ronpaulians to vote for the Republican nominee even if he's more moderate/establishment than they would wish. Any Republican will make for a better SCOTUS than any democrat, and that's a long term play.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:24 PM   #12
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garcia Bronco View Post
"The Court's opinion says that the EPA does not have the right to re-write statutes to say what they think they should say. "

Exactly...and that has always been my problem with most departments under the executive branch. They try and write their own laws and it's dogshit.
Yup! It's really odd that this is being promoted as a success in conservative media, while Direckshun posts it as a success for his side.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:26 PM   #13
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post

BTW, this is the most important reason for our purity conservatives and ronpaulians to vote for the Republican nominee even if he's more moderate/establishment than they would wish. Any Republican will make for a better SCOTUS than any democrat, and that's a long term play.
Nope.

There's no guarantee their SC picks will wind up judging using strict construction, let alone for originalism.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
Nope.

There's no guarantee their SC picks will wind up judging using strict construction, let alone for originalism.
There's a guarantee that the SC picks of a democrat will not be. That's the fate you tempt when you indulge in the feel-goodism of voting 3rd party today.
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Old 06-24-2014, 01:17 PM   #15
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I'm about as pro-EPA as anyone I know, and this decision made sense to me.
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