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Court says US not obliged to regulate global warming gases

[JURIST] The US DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled [opinion, PDF] Friday that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) [official website] was correct in denying a nonprofit group's petition [case chronology] to regulate industrial gases and automobile emission pollutants that contribute to global warming [EPA backgrounder]. After the EPA rejected the request by the International Center for Technology Assessment [official website], several states and cities argued that the Clean Air Act [text] obligated the agency to step in and regulate the gases. But the Bush administration focused on an opinion written by the EPA's head lawyer in 2003, which said the EPA lacked that authority. The appeals court opinion avoided the larger question of whether the EPA actually lacks the regulation authority, with Judge A. Raymond Randolph [profile] saying the court should allow the agency to make judgments for questions "on the frontiers of scientific knowledge." The states involved in the case were California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. AP has more.

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