California leads 23-state coalition in suing Trump admin over Obama-era emission standards

California is leading a coalition of 23 state attorneys generals who are suing the Trump administration after his move earlier in the week to revoke the state’s authority to enforce their own vehicle emission standards, a right granted by former President Barack Obama, according to The Hill.

“The lawsuit, filed by California’s Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D) along with the leaders of 23 other states; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles and New York City, argues that the Trump administration unlawfully removed the state’s waiver granted under the Clean Air Act.

In their suit, the states accuse the decision which to wave California’s right to set its own standards exceeds the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) authority.

The new emissions rule was drafted jointly by the NHTSA, under the Department of Transportation (DOT), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) according to The Hill.

“State Plaintiffs respectfully request that the Preemption Regulation be declared unlawful and set aside because it exceeds NHTSA’s authority, contravenes Congressional intent, and is arbitrary and capricious, and because NHTSA has failed to conduct the analysis required under the National Environmental Policy Act,” the suit filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia reads according to The Hill.

Becerra said in his Friday press release that the Trump administration “insists on attacking the authority of California and other states to tackle air pollution and protect public health.”

“The Oval Office is really not a place for on-the-job training. President Trump should have at least read the instruction manual he inherited when he assumed the Presidency, in particular the chapter on respecting the Rule of Law. Mr. President, we’ll see you in court,” he added.

Red Blue Divide first reported on this issue in February of this year when it was announced that the Trump administration is poised to roll back yet another Obama era California rule that would put mile per gallon restrictions on vehicles bought by California residents.

The Daily Caller News Foundation reported that in 2012, Obama administration officials mandated that by 2025 all vehicles would need to average 50 miles per gallon, as part of their climate change agenda.

Federal officials along with the California Air Resources Board met to attempt to compromise between the Obama administration rule, and what the current administration’s goal of freezing the standards where they stand at 37 miles per gallon.

“The freeze would prevent about 1,000 traffic fatalities a year and save $500 billion in societal costs, according to EPA and DOT estimates,” the Daily Caller reported. “That proposal also laid the groundwork for EPA to revoke California’s ability to set its own tailpipe standards for carbon dioxide emissions.”

According to the Trump administration, the rule was causing a safety issue, because residents were driving older, less safe cars thanks to a rise in the price of new cars the Daily Caller reported.

Written by Savannah Pointer.

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