CPP Update: Abeyance, Listening Sessions, and Climate Mayors’ Letter

On March 1, the D.C. Circuit ordered that West Virginia et al. v. EPA, No. 15-1363, the litigation surrounding the Clean Power Plan, should remain in abeyance for another 60 days.  Consistent with prior orders, the court directed EPA to continue filing status reports at 30-day intervals.  The Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, available from the Office of Management and Budget, shows that EPA is expected to issue a final rule repealing the CPP in October 2018.  It also shows that agencies plan to finalize three deregulatory actions for every new regulatory action in FY 2018.  (Last year, President Trump’s One-In, Two-Out Executive Order required agencies to identify at least two existing regulations to repeal for every new significant regulation an agency proposes for notice and comment or otherwise promulgates.)

The comment deadline on EPA’s proposal to repeal the CPP has been extended until April 26, and EPA continues to hold listening sessions to allow the public to provide oral testimony on the proposal.  The next listening session will be held on Tuesday, March 27, in Gillette, Wyoming; EPA held listening sessions in Kansas City, Missouri, on February 21 and in San Francisco, California, on February 28.  Verbatim transcripts of the listening sessions and written statements will be included in the docket (Docket No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355) for the rulemaking.

Finally, on February 28, 240 Mayors from 48 states and territories re-submitted a comment letter to EPA opposing the proposed CPP repeal (the letter was originally submitted to EPA on February 20 with 233 signatories).  The letter states that while communities across the country are experiencing sea-level rise, heat waves, and increased extreme weather, these communities depend on national policies like the CPP to “enhance ongoing local efforts and enable new local initiatives to improve public heath, increase air quality, and reduce greenhouse gasses through energy innovation.”

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