EPA Refusal to Adopt Refinery Controls Results in Lawsuit

New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo on Aug. 25 announced he is suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for failing to adopt regulations that control emissions of global warming pollution from oil refineries.

Cuomo is leading a group of 12 states, the District of Columbia, and the city of New York in a suit that challenges EPA's refusal to require new or renovated oil refineries to install technologies that control global warming pollution, in violation of the Clean Air Act.

The agency's refusal to control pollution from oil refineries is the latest example of the Bush Administrations do-nothing policy on global warming, said Cuomo. "Oil refineries contribute substantially to global warming, posing grave threats to New York's environment, health, and economy. As long as the Bush EPA continues its blatant violation of the Clean Air Act and its shameful refusal to control global warming pollution, I will continue to fight them aggressively on all fronts," he added.

The lawsuit charges that EPA violated the Clean Air Act when it refused to issue New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for controlling global warming pollution emissions from oil refineries.

The Clean Air Act requires EPA to adopt NSPS for oil refineries, as well as power plants and other major stationary sources, if the EPA determines they emit air pollution that poses a danger public health and welfare. On June 24, 2008, the agency finalized new air pollution control regulations for oil refineries without setting a NSPS for global warming pollution.

Cuomo also is leading state coalitions in lawsuits to require EPA to set NSPS for global warming pollution emissions from power plants and to uphold the right of states to regulate pollution emissions from automobiles.

The suit was filed in the federal Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Joining New York City in the action are California, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, as well as the District of Columbia and the city of New York.

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