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Court ruling favors Texas over EPA
AUSTIN -- Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott issued the following statement March 28, regarding the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s decision overturning the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) improper disapproval of Texas’ Pollution Control Project Standard Permit:
“Showing seemingly no regard for the federal laws that govern what it can and cannot do, the EPA unlawfully disapproved a commonsense Texas air permitting program that fully complied with the federal Clean Air Act and reduced harmful emissions. The EPA disregarded the limited authority it was granted under federal law and incorrectly alleged that Texas would not act sensibly and in accordance with its own laws. This victory marks the second time in the last three months that Texas has successfully obtained relief from the courts after an unlawful overreach by the EPA.”
The court’s decision explains that the EPA improperly rejected Texas’ Pollution Control Projcet Standard Permit more than three years after the agency’s statutory deadline and that the EPA provided no legal basis under the federal Clean Air Act for its disapproval of Texas’ Pollution Control Project Standard Permit.
The court also criticized the EPA for ignoring the federalist system established by the Clean Air Act and disregarding the state’s authority to implement air permitting programs. Under the Clean Air Act, the court pointed out, the EPA is responsible for identifying pollutants and setting national standards, while the states are empowered to create their own unique air quality programs that ensure compliance with federal standards.
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April 11, 2012 10:40am
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