EPA Takes the First Step Toward Federal Regulation of GHGs in Finding that GHGs Are an Endangerment to the Public Health and Welfare

Climate Change

On December 7, 2009, the EPA issued two findings regarding GHGs: (1) GHGs threaten the public health and welfare of current and future generations and (2) the combined emissions of the GHGs from new motor vehicles and new motor vehicle engines contribute to the GHG pollution which threatens public health and welfare. EPA took this action directly in response to the landmark United States Supreme Court decision, Massachusetts v. EPA, 549 U.S. 497 (2007). In Massachusetts, the Supreme Court found that GHGs fit within the Clean Air Act’s definition of air pollutants and ordered EPA to determine whether or not emissions of GHGs from new motor vehicles cause or contribute to air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare.

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