Energy

States File Legal Challenge Asserting Trump’s EPA MUST Fight Global Warming

A coalition of states filed a legal challenge Wednesday against the Trump administration’s decision to roll back a slew of Obama-era climate regulations.

The legal motion comes after Trump signed an executive order targeting climate change regulations ushered in by former President Barack Obama. The New York-led group of states argue Trump’s Environmental Protections Agency has a legal obligation to regulate emissions some climate scientists believe contribute to global warming.

“The law is clear: the EPA must limit carbon pollution from power plants,” New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who is leading the legal challenge, said in a statement. Other states behind the challenge include California, Delaware, Maryland and Massachusetts.

The motion asks the District of Columbia U.S. Court of Appeals to toss out a request from the Trump administration for a delay in the court proceedings on an Obama-era policy known as the Clean Power Plan.

Trump’s executive order was largely aimed at halting the Clean Power Plan, which required states to slash carbon dioxide emissions from coal power plants. The plan was never implemented, however, because it was challenged in court by 26 Republican-led states.

The Trump administration says this and other Obama-era rules hinder the American economy and create a stultifying business environment. The coalition of states argued in a statement the delay “would waste the substantial resources already expended in this litigation,” according to a statement from the group.

Schneiderman hired Howard Master, a prosecutor who served under an Obama-appointed U.S. attorney, to focus on corruption cases involving the Trump administration. Master’s primary responsibility, according to Schneiderman’s office, will be investigating and possibly prosecuting the Trump administration for possible civil rights abuses.

Schneiderman’s decision to hire Master may indicate the crusading AG plans to flood Trump and his administration with legal filings, subpoenas, and lawsuits, The Wall Street Journal reported.

“[Master] will be working on a wide range of civil and criminal investigations and enforcement matters, including public corruption, complex civil litigation,” Eric Soufer, a spokesman for Schneiderman, told WSJ.

Schneiderman has made fighting what he calls “man-made” global warming a crucial part of his duties as New York’s top law office. He has engaged in a months-long investigation into whether Exxon Mobil illegally hid internal climate research from the public and shareholders. The Democrat based the bulk of his probes on research from left-leading media outlets, many of which receive funding from wealthy environmental groups.

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