When EPA determined in 2009 that carbon dioxide and related substances pose a danger to human health and the environment, it skipped a step. EPA neglected to seek peer review from the Science Advisory Board (SAB), as required by law. That means EPA has to go back to Square One and start over. Accordingly, all federal regulations governing carbon dioxide emission under the Clean Air Act, which are entirely dependent on the endangerment finding, are null and void. That’s what’s supposed to happen when a federal administrative agency thumbs its nose at Congress and refuses to obey the law. Yet in 2012, ignoring Supreme Court precedent, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit didn’t see it that way and dismissed PLF’s challenge to EPA’s carbon dioxide endangerment finding.
On March 20, 2013, PLF filed a petition for writ of certiorari asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review the case. Because EPA violated its nondiscretionary duty to submit the proposed endangerment finding to SAB for scientific peer review, the finding should be vacated and remanded to the Agency. EPA is not above the law and is not a law unto itself. When it ignores mandated rulemaking requirements, it needs to be held accountable.
Because carbon dioxide is virtually everywhere and in everything, the endangerment finding confers upon EPA unprecedented authority to direct and control the Nation’s physical, economic, and social infrastructure. EPA should not be allowed to arrogate to itself such enormous power by violating the law. PLF argues in its petition that, if ever there were a case of exceptional importance to the Nation, it is to be found in the endangerment finding. The possibility that a finding of such great moment was made illegally provides ample justification for the Supreme Court to grant the writ of certiorari and hear the case.