The Court Of Appeals Decision Striking Down The Bush EPA Rule On Mercury Emissions

[Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has long been the Senate’s leader on mercury pollution control policy.  Leahy also was chief sponsor of the resolution that a Republican-led Senate narrowly defeated two years ago to repeal the Bush Administration’s cap-and-trade mercury pollution rule, which the appellate court struck down today.   The Sept. 13, 2005, vote on the Leahy resolution was 47 to 51.  Vermont was one of many states that had challenged the Bush mercury rule.   Leahy’s reaction to the ruling follows:]

“This ruling is a big win for healthier air and water for everyone, and especially for a whole generation of the most vulnerable Americans, our children.  Mercury is so toxic that even small amounts cause birth defects, IQ loss and mental retardation.  The American people should not have to wait another decade for a real solution.

“When the question is allowing old power plants to keep on polluting, there is only one right answer, and the Bush Administration got it wrong.  Their mercury rule was of, by and for the powerful special interests who want to continue polluting.  We even documented the fact that the White House let the special interests write this rule.  This ruling turns the page on one of the darkest decisions in EPA’s history.”

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