New York and seven other Northeastern states are suing the Environmental Protection Agency in federal court for denying a petition to force some Midwestern and Southern states to control smog pollution that blows into New York and other Northeast states.
“Millions of New Yorkers are breathing unhealthy air as smog pollution continues to pour in from other states,” New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said Tuesday. “The federal government has a fundamental responsibility to act. Yet the Trump EPA has abandoned its responsibilities, repeatedly failing to act to control smog pollution that jeopardizes New Yorkers’ health. Attorneys general will continue to act to protect those we serve.”
Schneiderman, a Democrat, filed the lawsuit in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals with the attorneys general of Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
The states are challenging EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s denial of a petition that New York and other Northeast states filed in 2013 for the agency to add nine states to the “Ozone Transport Region.” States included in the region are required under the Clean Air Act to work together to reduce smog pollution.
The EPA under the Obama administration originally proposed denying the petition on the day before President Trump’s inauguration.
Schneiderman is a leading opponent of the Trump administration's policies and has filed legal challenges related to the president's immigration and environmental actions.
For example, he is suing the Trump administration for missing a deadline to implement Obama-era standards for controlling smog-forming pollution, known as ozone rules.
This month, Schneiderman’s office took its 100th legal or administration action against the Trump administration and congressional Republicans, the New York Times reported.