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In the News

  • Biden’s LNG Exports Pause Leans on Broad Public Interest Statute

    “There’s absolutely no reason climate should not be considered as part of the public interest,” said Max Sarinsky, senior attorney at the New York University School of Law’s Institute for Policy Integrity. The change is a long overdue update for the 2019 life cycle analysis of greenhouse gas emissions that concluded US LNG exports are likely to reduce global emissions on a per-unit basis because of an assumption that LNG is replacing other fossil fuel sources, Sarinsky said.

  • Inside Biden’s Climate Test for LNG

    Max Sarinsky, an attorney with the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University Law School, said if the Energy Department updates its analytical assumptions for gas, it could significantly change its calculus on approving new projects. But what would happen if the U.S. didn’t ship LNG? “The harder piece of it is thinking through more seriously how exporting gas will affect the energy mix globally — and particularly in the countries that we’re exporting to — and what that could mean for the pace of renewables going forward,” said Sarinsky. Sarinsky of NYU and his colleague, Minhong Xu, released a report Friday that tallied the climate damages of expanded U.S. LNG exports using two sets of social cost of greenhouse gas metrics — the administration’s interim figures and updated EPA values.

  • Biden’s Gas Export Pause Could Ripple Through LNG Lawsuits

    The Biden administration's decision to halt new LNG exports may bolster pending lawsuits against the government's approvals of proposed LNG facilities — and could face its own hurdles in court. For projects with export approvals and lawsuits that pre-date the Biden administration's pause, courts' consideration of DOE's review in those cases may be limited, said Max Sarinsky, a senior attorney at the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University. "Technically speaking, this announcement is outside the records of those approvals," he said. "But contextually, it's in the atmosphere. It might give judges a little bit more pause."

  • Will the Supreme Court Finish Trump’s War Against Regulation?

    According to New York University’s Institute for Policy Integrity, the Trump administration won only 23 percent of legal challenges to its agency actions (which were almost entirely deregulatory), compared to a success rate of about 70 percent defending agency actions in previous administrations. 

  • Environmentalists Fear Major Policy Uncertainty If High Court Ends Chevron

    Environmentalists are warning that if the Supreme Court ends the long-standing Chevron doctrine, as is widely expected after Jan. 17 arguments, it will result in significant policy uncertainty as courts conduct heightened scrutiny of EPA and other agency rules while Congress is unable to provide detailed legislation that such an approach requires... Donald Goodson of the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University tells Inside EPA that the high court should have dismissed Loper and just heard Relentless, which is “the obviously better vehicle” because all nine justices can participate.

  • 4 Things to Know About EPA’s New Climate Damage Metric

    As 2023 drew to a close, EPA sharply increased its estimates for what climate change costs society. A higher carbon value can help tip the scales in favor of a stronger regulatory option that delivers greater net benefits... “Agencies often leave a more stringent option on the table, even if their own analysis finds that it would yield greater net benefits,” said Max Sarinsky, a senior attorney at the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University School of Law.

  • How Can We Ensure Energy Transition is Just?

    Utility regulators now face the challenge of ensuring that the energy utilities they oversee do their parts to effect the energy transition, while continuing to provide safe and adequate service at just and reasonable rates. Moreover, they need to accomplish all this while assuring fairer outcomes for communities that have in the past been persistently and disproportionately harmed by energy infrastructure decisions.

  • Court’s ‘Blockbuster’ Cases Could ‘Radically Change’ Administrative Law

    Donald Goodson of the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University says the Chervon and APA cases, taken together, could have even more of an impact than in isolation. That is because if the Supreme Court overturns or narrows Chevron and then extends the statute of limitations under the APA, that could open up old rules to new challenges, creating massive uncertainty.

  • There’s a Lot to Celebrate in Treasury’s Clean Hydrogen Tax Credit Proposal

    By establishing commonsense measurement rules for the emissions intensity of electrolytic hydrogen, Treasury’s NOPR goes a long way towards ensuring that we don’t accidentally subsidize fossil-fuel-powered electrolysis. Without these rules, it would be easy to confuse fossil-fuel-powered electrolysis with renewables-powered electrolysis. If that were to happen, the most significant climate law in U.S. history would have the perverse effect of subsidizing hydrogen that causes twice as many emissions as the old method of steam methane reforming.

  • Why We Still Need the SEC’s Climate-Related Disclosures Rule

    Companies face growing financial risks from climate change. Around the world, investors are demanding more consistent, comparable, and reliable information about these risks so that they can make informed investment decisions. Regulators are listening. In March 2022, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed a rule that would require public companies to include in certain SEC filings specific climate-related disclosures. The SEC might finalize these requirements any day now. In the meantime, California and the European Union (EU) have adopted their own climate-related disclosure regimes. These new regimes require many of the same disclosures and cover many of the same companies as the SEC’s proposed rule.