FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 28, 2022
Contact: Jerri Mares – (505) 321-4372
ALBUQUERQUE — Today, New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas joined a coalition of 8 state and territorial Attorneys General in a letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan encouraging the EPA to consider establishing National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for greenhouse gases to address the climate crisis. The letter follows in the wake of West Virginia v. EPA, the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision limiting the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants. If the EPA were to adopt NAAQS for greenhouse gases, all 50 states would be required to develop a comprehensive climate action plan specifically designed for their state.
“Climate change is real and it is affecting our lives, and inaction is no longer an option; it is clear that we need an alternate climate change strategy,” said Attorney General Balderas.
In the letter, the Attorneys General urge this course of action as a means of meeting the United States’ commitments under the Paris Agreement, a worldwide climate accord the U.S. just recently rejoined, without invoking the “major questions” doctrine the Supreme Court relied on in striking down the EPA’s power plant regulation authority.
New Mexico has been involved in litigation over the EPA’s right to regulate greenhouse gases from power plants since 2015. Together with a coalition of states, New Mexico successfully challenged the Trump Administration’s attempts to roll back numerous environmental protections and continues to be actively engaged in climate protection efforts.
In addition to the New Mexico Attorney General, the letter was signed and submitted to the EPA by the Attorneys General of Delaware, Guam, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, and Oregon.
The letter is attached.