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SCOTUS: Clean Air Act Trumps Emissions Lawsuits 303

Posted by Soulskill
from the laying-down-the-law dept.
schwit1 writes "The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a global warming lawsuit against five big power companies, its most important environmental ruling since 2007 and a victory for the utilities and the Obama administration. The justices unanimously overturned a ruling by a US appeals court that the lawsuit now involving six states can proceed in an effort to force the coal-burning plants to cut emissions of gases that contribute to climate change. In a defeat for environmentalists, the Supreme Court agreed with the companies that regulating greenhouse gases should be left to the Environmental Protection Agency under the clean air laws. The ruling stemmed from a 2004 lawsuit claiming the five electric utilities have created a public nuisance by contributing to climate change. The lawsuit wanted a federal judge to order them to cut their carbon dioxide emissions."
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SCOTUS: Clean Air Act Trumps Emissions Lawsuits

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  • by h00manist (800926) on Monday June 20, 2011 @03:39PM (#36505516) Journal

    It would be nice if technology evolves so you could generate your own power easily, perhaps with a few neighbors - and not pay or support any company at all.

  • by PIBM (588930) on Monday June 20, 2011 @03:49PM (#36505616) Homepage

    The most commonly found here are:

    Wind power
    Hydro power
    Solar power

    Depending on where you live, scratch some off, pick one of the remaining.

  • Re:Yes, the EPA (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RazzleFrog (537054) on Monday June 20, 2011 @03:52PM (#36505652)

    Releasing CO2 isn't illegal as long as it falls within current regulations. Suing the power companies is like me suing smokers (who are smoking in legal places).

  • Re:Yes, the EPA (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rei (128717) on Monday June 20, 2011 @04:00PM (#36505724) Homepage

    Precisely. Anthropogenic global warming cannot exist if the average voter doesn't believe in it. ~97-98% of active, publishing climate scientists be damned; [pnas.org] they're not a majority of the electorate.

    It's just like how God exists if you can't fathom the concept of living in a universe without a God.

  • by presidenteloco (659168) on Monday June 20, 2011 @04:44PM (#36506202)

    You can do anything you want as long as you don't fry the frickin' planet.

    Is that too much to ask? Apparently yes for many people.

    And don't give me "the science is wrong" crap. I heard it straight from the co-chair of working group 1 of the IPCC last week.
    The science is high-quality. The predictions are getting worse (for us) every time they are revised. The evidence that humans
    are a major cause is clear. As the CO2 is increasing, O2 is decreasing correspondingly, showing that the CO2 emissions
    are from combustion processes. "The science is wrong" is a desperate last-ditch appeal by the ignorant or malicious to
    the ignorant.

  • Re:Well well... (Score:1, Interesting)

    by yacwroy (1558349) on Monday June 20, 2011 @07:10PM (#36507646)

    Firstly, false dichotomy. We can prepare for problems caused by AGW and reduce CO2 at the same time.

    Secondly, nature has been shown to do a pretty darn good job of keeping the climate incredibly stable over many millennia before man for the majority of it's life (ice age transitions are short, relatively), and we even have the capabilities to help nature keep it stable even during external pressures if we take the necessary steps (say by using CO2 as a controlled feedback system).

    Thirdly, the non-AGW scenarios that cause significant shifts in climate (including the ones you list) are so incredibly rare in human time-scales that what you say becomes analogous to a doctor considering not treating a patient due to expenses because they might die in a car crash.
    The universe will eventually become unliveable (AFAWK) - should we give up all our cares due to this?

    Lastly, we're not ready to power everything via alternatives, but we're ready and able (if not willing) to power everything with nuclear, alternatives and only as much fossil as nature and us can re-absorb for as long as we need to till we get fusion (or something that beats it).

Save gas, don't use the shell.

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