In response to the Supreme Court ruling in West Virginia et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) et al. restricting the agency’s ability to limit energy sector emissions, EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan has strongly reiterated that the agency’s priority is the protection of the community’s health.
“Make no mistake: we will never waver from that responsibility,” Regan states. “While I am deeply disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision, we are committed to using the full scope of EPA’s authorities to protect communities and reduce the pollution that is driving climate change. We will move forward to provide certainty and transparency for the energy sector, which will support the industry’s ongoing efforts to grow our clean energy economy.”
“At this moment, when the impacts of the climate crisis are becoming ever more disruptive, costing billions of dollars every year from floods, wildfires, droughts and sea level rise, and jeopardizing the safety of millions of Americans, the court’s ruling is disheartening. EPA will move forward with lawfully setting and implementing environmental standards that meet our obligation to protect all people and all communities from environmental harm,” continues Regan.
In his statement, President Joe Biden spoke about legal actions the administration will be taking to counter the ruling’s effects.
“I have directed my legal team to work with the Department of Justice and affected agencies to review this decision carefully and find ways that we can, under federal law, continue protecting Americans from harmful pollution, including pollution that causes climate change…My administration will continue using lawful executive authority, including the EPA’s legally upheld authorities, to keep our air clean, protect public health and tackle the climate crisis.”
“We will work with states and cities to pass and uphold laws that protect their citizens,” President Biden adds. “And we will keep pushing for additional Congressional action, so that Americans can fully seize the economic opportunities, cost-saving benefits and security of a clean energy future. Together, we will tackle environmental injustice, create good-paying jobs and lower costs for families building the clean energy economy.
“The trajectory is clear – states, utilities, and consumers are demanding more renewable energy to create jobs and combat climate change,” comments John Begala, vice president of federal and state policy at the Business Network for Offshore Wind. Offshore wind will play a critical role in this transition as a provider of clean, reliable, and affordable energy while creating 77,000 well-paying jobs for welders, technicians, factory workers, and ship captains. A supply chain of domestic businesses supporting this industry is already emerging, attracting over $12 billion in investments in the U.S. market to rebuild our ports, build new manufacturing facilities, and construct nearly two dozen new vessels.”
“It’s a great start, but it is not enough,” Begala continues. “We need more focus on building a robust domestic supply chain capable of reaching our nation’s ambitious offshore wind goals and to counter fierce global competition for offshore wind jobs and investments. In the wake of today’s ruling, Congress should work to accelerate the development of offshore wind, and all renewable energy, to create well-paying jobs and keep the nation on a path to a cleaner energy future.”