The Energy & Environmental Legal Institute (E&E Legal) is extremely disappointed that the DC Circuit three judge panel refused to consider whether the EPA was improperly influenced by so called ‘green’ groups when the agency put forth the Clean Power Plan (CPP) that intended to “bankrupt” coal power plants and eliminate coal miners jobs throughout the country. We have painstakingly gathered evidence of improper ex parte contact between these outside groups and key EPA employees while the rule was being drafted, yet the Court has decided not to look at it in this case. The ex parte contact was extreme and included meetings at coffee shops across the street from EPA, extensive use of private e-mail servers by agency officials, and the ‘green groups’ clear involvement in the drafting and editing of the CPP.
“I spent thirty-three years of my life at the EPA, and never witnessed the level of illegal collusion and outside influence that occurred with the drafting and release of the CPP,” said E&E Legal General Counsel David Schnare. “This rule is tainted from the beginning, must be remanded to the EPA for a do-over, and E&E Legal will not stop pursuing this line of argument until a court hears it.”
E&E Legal intends to fight to present this evidence before other courts. We will work to introduce it when the DC Circuit considers the EPA’s rule limiting new coal power plants. We have also submitted a petition for reconsideration to EPA based on these improper contacts and if the Agency fails to do its duty to act on the petition in a timely fashion, we will sue to enforce the EPA’s obligations under the Clean Air Act.