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Justice Elena Kagan says Supreme Court 'does not have a clue about how to address climate change' as it limits EPA's authority on greenhouse gases

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Elena Kagan
Elena Kagan.Mark Wilson/Getty Images
  • Justice Elena Kagan slammed the Supreme Court over its decision on Thursday.

  • The court ruled to limit the federal government's ability to regulate gas emissions.

  • Kagan criticized the Court, calling the decision "frightening."

Justice Elena Kagan on Thursday criticized the Supreme Court over its decision to narrow the Environmental Protection Agency's power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, saying conservatives on the high court had made themselves the "decision-maker on climate policy."

The major 6-3 ruling, for the case West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency, limits the EPA's ability to set regulations on the energy sector — a decision that poses massive implications on the Biden administration's goals to fight climate change.

"Whatever else this Court may know about, it does not have a clue about how to address climate change," Kagan wrote in a dissenting opinion, joined by the court's two other liberals, Justices Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor.

She continued: "And let's say the obvious: The stakes here are high. Yet the Court today prevents congressionally authorized agency action to curb power plants' carbon dioxide emissions. The Court appoints itself — instead of Congress or the expert agency — the decisionmaker on climate policy. I cannot think of many things more frightening."

The Supreme Court's decision handed a victory to West Virginia and a slew of Republican-led states, many of which are fossil fuel producers, that brought the challenge against the EPA's authority to impose sweeping regulations. Chief Justice John Roberts delivered the majority opinion.

In a concurring opinion, Justice Neil Gorsuch pushed back on the dissent, writing that, "the Court hardly professes to 'appoint itself' 'the decision-maker on climate policy.'"

He continued: "The Court acknowledges only that, under our Constitution, the people's elected representatives in Congress are the decisionmakers here — and they have not clearly granted the agency the authority it claims for itself."

Read the original article on Business Insider