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Climate Works for All’s Statement in Response on the Supreme Court Decision

July 1, 2022

Climate Works for All is incredibly disappointed and disheartened with yesterday’s Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruling on West Virginia v. EPA, limiting the agency’s authority to broadly regulate power plant emissions in accordance with the Clean Air Act. The decision effectively overturns the “Chevron deference,” a principle that gives expert agencies the power to interpret laws in the areas they regulate, and gives SCOTUS the sole authority to interpret all federal laws. This majority decision puts any federal climate action, that is not narrowly and explicitly stated in legislation, at risk. The inability for the EPA to implement well-established, science-based climate policy now is not only dangerous – but fatal. 

New Yorkers have been leaders in the climate movement, passing landmark climate legislation like the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) and the Climate Mobilization Act (Local Law 97) among others. This unfortunate decision means that it is now even more critical for state and municipal authorities to take aggressive actions on climate. Today’s decision makes the path forward for New York City clear: Mayor Adams can and must push for an equitable implementation of Local Law 97 along with a cap on RECs at 10%. 

Today’s decision will exacerbate the climate crises and continue the discriminatory and harmful legacy of environmental injustice across communities of color and low income communities that have faced the brunt of the climate crisis for decades. We cannot continue to abandon New Yorkers who face unjust and inhumane consequences due to our lack of action against the on-going climate crisis.