At its heart the question is whether the Georgia Air Quality Act and the federal Clean Air Act (CAA) regulate emission of carbon dioxide (CO2).
Fulton County Superior Court Judge Thelma Wyatt Cummings Moore, the Friends of the Chattahoochee, Inc. and Sierra Club say YES.
Dr. Carol Couch, Director of the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Longleaf Energy Associates, LLC and a host of amici led by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and ranging from utility companies, local Chambers of Commerce, health care professionals, homebuilders, and politicans all say NO.
Applications for appeal have been filed with the Court of Appeals of Georgia, Longleaf Energy Associates v. Friends of the Chattahoochee, No. A08D0472 and Couch v. Friends of the Chattahoochee, No. A08D0473. The Appellate Court has until August 29 to decide whether to accept the appeal.
The appeals seek the complete reversal of Judge Moore and argue that Massachusetts v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency only held that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) could, not does regulate CO2 under the CAA. The contention is that Judge Moore jumped the gun and should have waited on the EPA to make the decision as to whether and how to regulate CO2.
You can obtain a copy of Judge Moore’s decision here.