AG Healey Files Lawsuit Challenging Trump Administration’s Illegal Delay of Vehicle Emissions Rule
BOSTON — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey today joined a coalition of attorneys general and the California Air Resources Board in filing a lawsuit against the Federal Highway Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation for their illegal delay of a regulation that would lead to significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles on federal highways across the country.
The delayed regulation, known as the Greenhouse Gas Performance Measure, requires all states to measure and track greenhouse gas emissions and set locally-appropriate targets. The Trump Administration delayed the measure twice and has now indefinitely suspended it without providing notice or soliciting comments from the public and interested parties, as required under federal law.
“This is just the latest effort by the Trump Administration to undermine our longstanding effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles,” said AG Healey. “States must continue to stand up to this administration when it disregards our environmental laws.”
Greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide emissions, are a significant factor in climate change and are harmful to public health. The transportation sector represented more than 40 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in Massachusetts in 2013. It is the only sector in the state and region in which greenhouse gas emissions are continuing to climb.
Massachusetts has its own greenhouse gas reduction targets and regulations that require metropolitan planning organizations in the state to use the impact of greenhouse gas emissions as a criterion when reviewing a transportation project to promote achievement of the state targets.
However, the Greenhouse Gas Performance Measure is critically important to obtain greenhouse gas emission reductions in the transportation sector in all states, which would mitigate the impacts of climate change already being experienced in Massachusetts and reduce future harms.
Joining AG Healey in filing today’s complaint filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California are the states of California, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington, and the California Air Resources Board.