Competing groups of state attorneys general are on opposite sides of the Biden administration’s proposed stricter auto emissions limits.
Twenty-five Republican attorneys general are calling for the president to back off the plan, and 20 other states’ Democratic attorneys general are pressing for yet stricter regulation.
The Environmental Protection Agency announced plans in April to enact the most stringent vehicle emissions limits ever. The move is part of the administration’s efforts to increase electric-vehicle adoption as a way to curb harmful emissions.
The restrictions apply to 2027 to 2032 models. The EPA will let automakers decide whether to comply through electrification or other technologies. The standards require that 67% of new light-duty vehicle sales be electric and 46% of medium-duty vehicle sales by the 2032 model year.
Republican attorneys general urging the administration to drop the emission restrictions claim it’s overstepping its bounds.
“Having failed to pass climate change legislation, President Biden is now unconstitutionally pushing his green priorities through administrative agencies that lack Congressional authority to implement these changes,” said Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, who’s helping lead the GOP opponents. “We will not stand by while this administration attempts to circumvent the legislative process.”
Democratic attorneys general, along with multiple major cities, including New York and Los Angeles, say technological advancements make stricter rules not only feasible but necessary.
“Under the Biden Administration, EPA is once again taking seriously our moral and legal obligation to address climate change and air pollution,” said California Attorney General Bonta, who’s leading the coalition. “Precisely for that reason, our coalition is asking EPA to adopt standards more stringent than its proposed standards. This July 4th was the warmest day ever recorded worldwide — it should serve as a wake-up call. We can and we must meet the moment.”