At the end of June, the Supreme Court released a series of devastating decisions that will impact our beloved communities across the country. In West Virginia v. EPA, SCOTUS sided with coal companies and their allies to limit the EPA from setting the standards we need to address climate pollution.
The court’s decision does not strip the EPA of its authority entirely, but it does significantly reduce its power. It does recognize EPA’s authority and responsibility to address climate pollution under the Clean Air Act, but it constrains EPA’s authority to rely on clean energy solutions the power industry itself identified as the most common, proven and cost-effective. Read more from our blogpost here.
The Supreme Court handed a victory to the well-coordinated and well-funded efforts of polluters and their allies, who clearly place profits over people. The good news is that Congress still has the power to do what the Court will not, which is why passing Reconciliation, and delivering $550 billion in investments in climate and clean energy, is now more important than ever before.
Here’s the current state of play:
- Congress is currently in July 4th recess, and will return next week for their four week work period before August recess begins.
- We’re still in a holding pattern waiting for negotiations to conclude on the reconciliation bill, but we do know that Congressional Democrats have settled on drug pricing legislation with the hope it could lead into a broader reconciliation deal with Sen. Joe Manchin.
- Some of the biggest unresolved energy issues are related to the “scope incentives for electric vehicles and whether to let entities access cash directly as opposed to going through large financial institutions”, and tax credits for producers of clean energy from sources like wind and solar.
Senate Majority Leader Schumer will likely not release the legislation until it’s in good shape. We could see legislative text as early as next week when Congress returns from recess, but it’s not clear what the timeline is just yet. It’s been quite a whirlwind to get this legislation passed, and our next best window to move forward is over the July work period. Keep the faith, and keep calling your senators and representatives! We are getting close to securing truly historic federal policies to advance climate justice.