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Press Release Court Rules in Favor of AG Healey and 12 Other State Attorneys General, Orders Trump Administration to Implement Energy Efficiency Standards

AG Healey, Coalition of AGs Sued Department of Energy over Refusal to Implement Standards to Improve Air Conditioners and Other Energy-Intensive Equipment
For immediate release:
2/16/2018
  • Office of Attorney General Maura Healey

Media Contact for Court Rules in Favor of AG Healey and 12 Other State Attorneys General, Orders Trump Administration to Implement Energy Efficiency Standards

Chloe Gotsis

BostonA federal court has ruled in favor of Attorney General Maura Healey and 12 other state attorneys general and ordered the Trump Administration to implement critical energy efficiency standards that will save consumers $8.4 billion over the next 30 years and result in major reductions in air pollution.  

The ruling comes in a case filed by the coalition of attorneys general in June 2017 against the Department of Energy (DOE) for violating federal law and harming consumers, the environment, public health, natural resources, and the economy by refusing to implement the standards.

“This ruling means that Rick Perry can no longer block these common sense, energy and money saving standards,” said AG Healey. “This is a huge victory for our environment, consumers, and our growing clean energy economy. We will continue take action against the Administration when it does things that are illegal and harmful to our states and our residents.”

On Thursday, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled in favor of AG Healey and a coalition of 12 other attorneys general, when it found that the DOE violated its error correction regulation under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act by failing to publish finalized energy efficiency standards in the Federal Register. The DOE failed to publish the finalized standards for portable air conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies, air compressors, and commercial packaged boilers.

The energy efficiency standards were approved by the Acting Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency at DOE in December 2016. As is required, the standards then underwent two procedural steps. First, they were subjected to a 45-day period for submission of correction requests. Once this period closed, the DOE was required to make any necessary corrections and submit these rules for publication in the Federal Register, making the rules legally enforceable. The DOE failed to complete this final step.

Joining AG Healey in filing the lawsuit against DOE were the attorneys general of California, New York, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia as well as the California Energy Commission and the City of New York.

AG Healey and a coalition of states attorneys general including of New York, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington, as well as the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the City of New York filed another lawsuit in April 2017 against DOE for a similar delay in finalizing energy efficiency standards for ceiling fans. Following the April lawsuit, the Trump Administration reversed course and published the ceiling fan efficiency standards as written. 

This matter is being handled on behalf of Massachusetts by Assistant Attorney General Andrew Goldberg of AG Healey’s Environmental Protection Division and Assistant Attorney General Joseph Dorfler of AG Healey’s Energy and Telecommunications Division.

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Media Contact for Court Rules in Favor of AG Healey and 12 Other State Attorneys General, Orders Trump Administration to Implement Energy Efficiency Standards

Office of Attorney General Maura Healey 

Attorney General Maura Healey is the chief lawyer and law enforcement officer of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

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