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High Court Faults EPA Inaction on Emissions
"The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers believes that there needs to be a national, federal, economy-wide approach to addressing greenhouse gases," said the alliance's president, Dave McCurdy, whose group had supported the EPA's position.
In a sign that the ruling is already reverberating on Capitol Hill, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman John D. Dingell (D-Mich.) -- a key player in the House debate over global warming -- issued a statement saying: "While I still believe Congress did not intend for the Clean Air Act to regulate greenhouse gases, the Supreme Court has made its decision and the matter is now settled. Today's ruling provides another compelling reason why Congress must enact, and the President must sign, comprehensive climate change legislation."
House Democrats have vowed to pass global warming legislation by July 4, and Senate leaders are working on their version of the bill. But it is unclear what kind of plan they will adopt and whether they will pass it as soon as they have promised.
Senate leaders said they will call EPA officials before the Environment and Public Works Committee this month to ask them how they plan to deal with the court's decision.
In the other environmental case, Environmental Defense et al. v. Duke Energy Corp. et al ., the court unanimously supported a decades-old initiative aimed at forcing power plants to install pollution-control equipment.
The case involved a movement launched during the Clinton administration to force companies to install pollution-control equipment in aging coal-fired power plants. More than two dozen plants in the South and the Midwest still have cases pending.
Staff writer William Branigin contributed to this report.