Washington joined 10 other states today in suing the Trump administration over its efforts to delay new energy efficiency standards.
The U.S. Department of Energy established the new standards for walk-in coolers and freezers, power supplies, portable air conditioners, commercial boilers and compressors under the Obama administration. According to the complaint filed today in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, these new standards will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 26 million metric tons per year.
According to a press release from the Office of Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, that’s roughly the equivalent of shutting down at least six coal-fired power plants.
Under the new administration, the U.S. Department of Energy has delayed publishing these new efficiency standards that have been in the works for years.
“The Trump Administration has no legal right to stand in the way of these important standards,” Ferguson said. “The benefits to consumers and the environment are too important to allow the Trump Administration to block these standards.”
The administration’s inaction, per Ferguson, is a violation of several federal acts, and the new standards cannot go into effect if they aren’t published. The 11 states — Washington, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Vermont, as well as the City of New York — are asking the court to force the Department of Energy to publish the standards.