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  • News

    Fuel-Economy Standards, Corporate Penalties, and a Very Costly Rollback

    February 20, 2020

    The mistake of setting corporate fuel-economy penalties just a little too low can be magnified by automakers’ decisions to produce millions of cars with worse fuel-economy. And the Trump penalty appears to be way too low to motivate compliance. Here’s a breakdown of the reduced penalty and how it will likely affect cars, consumers, and our climate.

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  • News

    Our Work on State Zero-Emission Credits Programs

    February 1, 2020

    Several states have determined that ensuring the viability of zero-emission electricity generation from nuclear power is critical to mitigating the impacts of climate change especially in the short term while states work to meet aggressive new clean energy goals. Through comments and amicus briefs, we’ve been involved in those efforts in both New York and New Jersey.

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  • News

    Courts Strike Down Conscience Protections Rule

    November 6, 2019

    Three federal courts—in the Southern District of the New York, the Northern District of California, and the Eastern District of Washington—vacated the Department of Health and Human Services’ conscience protections rule, which would have reduced healthcare access for women and LGBT individuals. In amicus briefs, Policy Integrity had criticized HHS for, among other things, failing to consider the rule’s likely health costs. The SDNY decision was consistent with our argument that HHS failed to provide a reasoned explanation for the rule.

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  • News

    Court Upholds New York’s Zero-Emissions Credit Program for Nuclear Power

    October 8, 2019

    The Albany County Supreme Court rejected a challenge to New York’s Zero-Emissions Credit (ZEC) program, which pays nuclear power plants for the value of avoided carbon emissions. The legal challenge focused largely on the state’s decision to use the Interagency Working Group’s Social Cost of Carbon (SCC) to value emissions.

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  • News

    Court Strikes Down Rule Refusing to Limit Cross-State Air Pollution

    October 1, 2019

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit vacated EPA’s Close-Out Rule, which allowed upwind states to continue emitting ground-level ozone pollution that significantly contributes to downwind air quality problems. The agency justified the rule by falling back on its analysis from the Cross-State Update, a prior rule that had provided only a partial remedy to interstate emissions. We filed an amicus brief, which argued that EPA fundamentally misunderstood its job in analyzing and choosing between cost-effective options.

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  • News

    Court Upholds 2015 Ozone Standards

    August 23, 2019

    A federal appeals court recently rejected industry and state challenges to a set of Obama-era air quality standards, which the Institute for Policy Integrity had filed an amicus brief defending. In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) strengthened National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone, the primary ingredient in urban smog and the source of a variety of respiratory ills. The coal mining company Murray Energy Corporation, along with trade associations and several state attorneys general, brought suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, arguing that the new standards were unnecessarily stringent and impossible to achieve. We filed an amicus brief in support of the standards.

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  • News

    Court Blocks Rule Making Harmful Changes to Title X Women’s Health Services

    April 26, 2019

    The Institute for Policy Integrity helped contribute to a significant legal victory, as district courts in Washington State, Oregon, and California blocked a Trump administration rule that makes harmful changes to federally-funded women’s health services. In February, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced onerous restrictions to its Title X program, likely forcing the shutdown of some family planning clinics and closing off access to others for low-income women. We submitted comments on the rule and amicus briefs supporting requests for preliminary injunction in four court cases. The Eastern District of Washington refers to our brief in the reasoning for its decision to grant an injunction. The Northern District of California’s ruling cites our brief and devotes a lengthy discussion to the arguments we advanced.

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  • News

    Testimony to New Jersey Legislature on Valuing Climate Impacts

    April 25, 2019

    Peter Howard and Denise Grab both provided testimony at an April 25 New Jersey State Legislature hearing on climate change mitigation and what the state can do to address greenhouse gas emissions. They discussed how New Jersey can contextualize and weigh climate impacts by using the social cost of greenhouse gases.

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  • News

    Court Overturns Repeal of Valuation Rule

    April 12, 2019

    The Institute for Policy Integrity helped contribute to a significant legal victory, as a federal district court in California today overturned the Trump administration’s repeal of the Interior Department’s Valuation Rule. The Valuation Rule sought to ensure that states and the federal government receive the full value of royalties due for oil, gas, and coal extracted from public lands. While the administration has lost numerous court cases related to deregulation, this is the first decision overturning a repeal of a rule. Policy Integrity submitted an amicus brief in the case and comments on the original rule and the repeal efforts.

    In our amicus brief, we argued that the repeal was unreasonable because of the agency’s inaccurate assessment of the repeal’s economic impact. District Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong’s opinion echoed some of the arguments from our brief and cited an academic article on deregulation written by Bethany Davis Noll and Denise Grab.

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  • News

    Colorado Senate Testimony on the Social Cost of Carbon

    March 19, 2019

    Colorado is considering a major overhaul of its electric resource planning rules and renewable energy standards. Jason Schwartz recently provided testimony in a Senate hearing on the reauthorization of the state’s Public Utilities Commission as part of this overhaul. Schwartz spoke about a possible requirement for the PUC to weigh the social costs of pollution in its decisions. Coloradoans, he explained, are paying the costs of climate pollution in the form of more dangerous wildfires, agricultural damages, declining snowpack, and a range of severe health effects. Many of these important costs can be quantified. In his testimony, Schwartz recommended that the PUC uses Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases metrics when evaluating energy resources in order to improve public welfare.

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