Last Updated on 01/03/2022 by Nidhi Khandelwal
With the Senate deadlocked on President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better legislation — and Congress about to revert to Republican control — the federal government may be the only medium-term chance for action on climate change.
The Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case challenging the Biden administration’s yet-to-be-announced carbon pollution regulations for power plants in a matter of days.
The conclusion will affect not only the fate of those specific measures, but also whether the federal government may enact any rules or regulations that cover a wide range of economic activities other than climate change.
entered office in 2017, such restrictions were put on hold, but the Biden administration has begun the process of bringing them back.
The case gives the court’s conservative supermajority the chance to suffocate the federal administrative state’s ability to adopt regulations over economic activity, even if Congress has delegated that authority to it.
Legislation empowering an agency to create rules addressing a certain activity as the need arises is known as “Congressional delegates.” The authority Congress provided the EPA to regulate polluting pollutants in the 1970 Clean Air Act is one example of such delegation.
The Environmental Protection Government’s (EPA) yet-to-be-proposed regulation of carbon emissions at power plants is an example of the agency enacting new regulations based on a more current understanding of what constitutes a damaging emission.