New York, NY — Over the past year, many coalitions of state attorneys general (AGs) have been hard at work pushing for changes in the climate, energy, and environmental justice space. “Where Are We Now? A Year of Agency & Attorney General Action,” a new report by the State Energy & Environmental Impact Center, looks at AG policy wins from the past year; reviews federal rulemaking progress under the Biden administration so far; and examines the importance of and obstacles to public input, as well as the role AGs can play in facing those challenges.
Snapshot of the report:
AG Policy Wins & Highlights Over the Past Year: The report gives an overview of concrete policy wins that AGs have advocated for in 2022. AGs have contributed to stronger regulation of vehicle emissions, methane emissions, air pollution that crosses state borders, and PFAS. They have also successfully advocated for stronger efficiency standards, ESG in retirement plans, and other significant environmental and clean energy issues.
Focus on Upcoming Agency Action: The report also uses data from the Center’s #StateImpactAlerts to track the progress the Biden administration has made towards achieving its climate, environmental, and financial goals. It also looks ahead to issue areas and agencies that are likely to see lots of action next year, including regulation of methane emissions and vehicle emissions, protection of communities around hazardous chemical facilities, and climate risk rulemakings by financial and tax agencies.
The Importance of Public Input and a Role for AGs Going Forward: Lastly, the report looks at requirements and reasons for public comment. It considers the challenges of building robust public participation, and highlights a role for AGs in addressing these challenges through advocacy and public education.
“As we come to the end of a busy year, it’s important to check in at this critical halfway point in the Biden administration’s term to survey what has been accomplished so far,” said Bethany Davis Noll, Executive Director of the State Energy & Environmental Impact Center at NYU School of Law. “AGs are working hard to push for protective environmental and energy policy at the federal level, in addition to addressing environmental harms in their own states. Looking ahead, as rules continue to be finalized and possibly challenged, AGs have a critical role to play in this space.”
About the State Energy & Environmental Impact Center:
The State Energy & Environmental Impact Center at NYU School of Law is a nonpartisan academic center at NYU School of Law. The Center is dedicated to working towards a healthy and safe environment, guided by inclusive and equitable principles. The Center studies and supports the work of state attorneys general (AGs) in defending, enforcing, and promoting strong laws and policies in the areas of climate, environmental justice, environmental protection, and clean energy.