On July 6, 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) released a proposed rule, dubbed the “Transport Rule”, which would replace the Clean Air Interstate Rule (“CAIR”). As you likely recall, in 2008 the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, in North Carolina v. EPA, found that CAIR had a number of fatal flaws and remanded it to the Agency. (Due to its environmental benefits, the Court agreed to leave CAIR in effect while EPA worked on addressing its concerns).
EPA has clearly attempted to address the problems identified in North Carolina v. EPA. Most significantly, while the Transport Rule still contains a trading component, trading is limited and the Rule ultimately requires that each state provide the reductions required to mitigate that state’s contribution to the interstate air transport problem. At 1,300 pages, the Rule is too long even to summarize here. For a quick summary, take a look at our Client Alert. You might also want to take a look at EPA’s helpful Fact Sheet and presentation summary for slightly more detail.