LITTLE ROCK – Rutledge issued a statement following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency. The Court held 6-3 that the EPA does not have the authority, through the Clean Air Act, to restructure the country’s entire energy industry by mandating the closure of coal power plants and requiring companies to invest in or purchase so-called “green” energy production. It particularly addresses the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s mistaken conclusion that federal law granted EPA broad authority to regulate economic sectors like manufacturing, hotels and power generation.
“President Biden has repeatedly tried to force his illegal green agenda, which would result in more inflation and limit our energy independence from foreign actors, but I am fighting back and winning for America,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Energy production now has a chance to thrive again because we have stopped Biden’s EPA power grab, and this reinforces Arkansas’s authority to decide what is best for its citizens.”
In February, West Virginia and 18 state attorneys general challenged an overbroad interpretation of the EPA’s power to regulate greenhouse-gas emissions from coal-fired plants.
The West Virginia v. EPA ruling marks the most consequential development in environmental law since a coalition of state attorneys general won a historic and unprecedented stay of the Obama-era Clean Power Plan at the Supreme Court in February 2016.
Read the full Supreme Court opinion here.