Thirteen AGs Pushed for Stronger EPA Regulation of GHGs from Airplanes

California Attorney General Rob Bonta led a coalition of 13 attorneys general in filing a brief in their challenge to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Aircraft Rule, which purports to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from aircrafts. Under the Clean Air Act, EPA is obligated to develop standards to mitigate these emissions, but the agency’s own analysis admitted that the rule will not actually reduce emissions or prompt technological improvements. The Clean Air Act also prevents states from adopting their own aircraft emissions standards, so EPA’s rule blocks states from protecting their communities, environment, and natural resources from aircraft pollution. The brief emphasized that the rule is inconsistent with EPA’s commitment to environmental justice. Low-income communities and communities of color are disproportionately harmed by co-pollutants associated with aircraft GHG emissions that are emitted during takeoffs and landings, yet the rule brushes off those concerns. The AGs urged the court to order EPA to set new, more effective GHG standards for aircraft that include environmental justice considerations.