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For immediate release – Thursday, January 24, 2008.
Contact Bob Brammer – 515-281-6699.

States Urge EPA to Act on Greenhouse Gases

Iowa A.G. Tom Miller and colleagues urge EPA to act on climate-change ruling.

Des Moines. State Attorneys General are urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to begin the process of regulating carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles. The seventeen AGs sent a letter to the EPA on Wednesday.

The State Attorneys General noted that the U.S. Supreme Court on April 2, 2007, established EPA’s responsibility to regulate greenhouse gases under the federal Clean Air Act (Massachusetts v. EPA), but that EPA had not taken steps since then to propose new regulations.

“We believe that EPA is unreasonably delaying action” on the matter, the letter said. The States and other parties filed a rule-making petition with EPA in 1999 asking for action, the letter noted. “EPA’s failure to exercise its clear authority under the Clean Air Act and to act on the petition constitutes an abdication of its regulatory responsibility,” the letter said.

The States urged EPA to take the first step – making a determination that greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles and other sources cause or contribute to air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare. The next step would be to consider establishing applicable emission standards.

The letter was sent Wednesday to Stephen L. Johnson, Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration. The letter was led by Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley. It was joined by Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, other state attorneys general, the City of New York, and the Mayor and City Council for Baltimore. The total of 17 state attorneys general represented the states of AZ, CA, CT, DE, IL, IA, ME, MD, MA, MN, NJ, NM, NY, OR, RI, VT, and WA.

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