CASE UPDATE: Court Rules Energy Efficiency Standards Stalled by Trump Administration Must Go into Effect

February 17, 2018 | Topic: Consumers

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro has won a federal court ruling requiring the Department of Energy to issue national energy efficiency standards – an important victory for environmental protection expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 99 million tons – the equivalent to taking 21 million cars off the road for a year.

Attorney General Shapiro announced a coalition of Attorneys General that sued Secretary of Energy Rick Perry last year for refusing to implement the standards has won a ruling requiring the Energy Department to comply with the law.

“This ruling is about standing up for the rule of law,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “Winning this court decision is an important victory for a cleaner environment. Climate change is real, and we need to act now to preserve our planet for our children and future generations. Stronger energy efficiency standards will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and must be part of any strategy to fight climate change.”

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled the Energy Department violated a regulation under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act by failing to publish in the Federal Register final energy efficiency standards for four products: portable air conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies, air compressors, and commercial boilers.

In addition to the environmental impact, the ruling is expected to have a positive effect on consumers as well, with savings for consumers expected to reach $8.4 billion over 30 years.

The lawsuit highlighted that the states have significant interests in reducing energy use and increasing energy efficiency, in protecting their populations and environments, and in enforcing the provisions of their laws designed to foster energy efficiency and reduce global warming.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro was joined in the filing of this lawsuit by the Attorneys General of California, New York Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia. The California Energy Commission and the City of New York also joined in the lawsuit.

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