Appeals Court Rejects Petition to Order EPA to Make Global Warming Endangerment Finding
The U.S. District Court of Appeals has unanimously rejected a petition requesting it require the Environmental Protection Agency to issue its long-delayed finding as to whether greenhouse gas emissions endanger human health and welfare. The petition had been filed by officials of 18 states exactly a year after the Supreme Court issued its decision in Massachusetts v. EPA, which ordered the EPA to issue an endangerment finding.
Since that time, Congressional and journalistic investigations have discovered that Administrator Stephen Johnson, with assistant deputy administrator Jason K. Burnett, worked to obey the Supreme Court decision and completed its work for submission to the White House on December 5, 2007. But the White House refused to accept the work, literally keeping Burnett’s email unopened and ordering him to retract the message. He refused to do so, and has since resigned.
The White House overrode the EPA decision to make the endangerment finding, to grant California a waiver to issue its own greenhouse tailpipe emissions regulations, and to recommend federal standards. Instead, Johnson denied California’s waiver and is expected to issue an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking sometime soon with draft emissions standards (he has missed his self-imposed deadline of the end of spring).