EPA, Not Courts, Has Authority to Set Pollution Rules

By STAFF | June 20, 2011 | 10:14 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has blocked a federal lawsuit by states and conservation groups trying to force cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

The court said Monday that the authority to seek reductions in emissions rests with the Environmental Protection Agency, not the courts. The ruling was 8-0.

EPA says it will decide by next year whether to order utilities to cut emissions of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. The lawsuit targeted the five largest emitters of carbon dioxide in the United States, four private companies and the federal Tennessee Valley Authority.

The Obama administration sided with the power companies in this case.

High court blocks states' climate change lawsuit