Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

Genon Rema, LLC v. United States Environmental Protection Agency

ELR Citation: 43 ELR 20167
Nos. 12-1022, (3d Cir., 07/12/2013)

The Third Circuit upheld an EPA rule imposing sulfur dioxide (S02) limits on a coal-fired power plant in Pennsylvania whose emissions travel directly across a river into areas of New Jersey. The owner of the plant challenged EPA's authority to impose direct regulations on the plant before the time that Pennsylvania is required to complete its CAA §110 SIP process for the one-hour SO2 NAAQS, arguing that EPA undermined the state's power to determine how to achieve air control standards. But CAA §126(b) clearly provides EPA an independent mechanism for enforcing interstate pollution control, thereby giving it authority to promulgate the rule. CAA §126(b) allows EPA to take immediate action when downwind states are affected by air pollution from upwind sources. Any other interpretation would defeat the underlying objective of the §126(b) petition process. Even if the statute was ambiguous, the CAA's legislative history and applicable legal precedent support this conclusion. The court, therefore, denied the petition and upheld the rule.