December 8, 2021

Volume XI, Number 342

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December 07, 2021

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December 06, 2021

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D.C. Circuit Stays Litigation over EPA Rescission of California Waiver to Regulate Vehicle Emissions

On February 8, 2021, the D.C. Circuit issued an order granting the Biden administration’s motion to stay litigation over Part 1 of the Trump-era Safer Affordable Fuel Efficient Vehicles (SAFE) Rule. The order was issued in Union of Concerned Scientists v. NHTSA (No. 19-1230) and consolidated cases. As detailed in our earlier alerts, Part 1 of the SAFE Rule rescinded the waiver EPA granted California to regulate vehicle greenhouse gas emissions and to implement a zero-emission vehicle program. Part 2 of the SAFE Rule finalized new standards for corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) and carbon dioxide emissions for passenger vehicles and light-duty trucks sold from model years 2021 through 2026.

This stay is one of the first of many that will likely be requested by the Biden administration in litigation challenging Trump-era rules. Consistent with President Biden’s executive order on Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis, EPA and NHTSA are now evaluating whether and how to replace the SAFE Rule. Stakeholders should watch for the Biden administration to seek to stay other legal challenges to the SAFE rule and move expeditiously on a replacement rule.

© 2021 Beveridge & Diamond PC National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 41
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About this Author

Thomas Richichi Litigation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Washington, DC
Principal

Tom has 30 years of experience litigating in state and federal trial courts.

He has served as lead counsel in numerous cases at the appellate level, with representations including arguments before the various federal circuits and the United States Supreme Court. Tom's experience includes matters involving environmental, international, transportation, human health risk, and consumer products issues. He has served as lead counsel on numerous complex litigation and enforcement matters involving private parties, state and federal agencies, and the U.S. Department of Justice and its...

202-789-6026
Daniel B. Schulson Environmental & Administrative Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Washington, DC
Principal

Daniel Schulson applies the insight and experience he gained from working in the Office of General Counsel at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to clients’ challenges on a broad array of issues.

He assists clients with many aspects of environmental and administrative law, including compliance counseling, permitting, due diligence, audits, commenting on agency rulemakings, administrative enforcement defense, and litigation.

Examples of Dan’s experience include:

  • Providing counsel to the U.S. government-appointed Independent...
202-789-6007
Joshua H. Van Eaton Environmental Litigation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Washington, DC
Principal

Joshua H. Van Eaton helps clients resolve high-stakes compliance, enforcement, and litigation matters.

He brings the perspective gained from a distinguished U.S. government service career to provide clients with strategic counsel on air, water, and waste issues with a focus on mobile source emissions. He also litigates those matters and advises on proactive environmental compliance strategies.

Prior to joining Beveridge & Diamond, Josh served as Senior Trial Attorney in the Environmental Enforcement Section of the Environment and Natural Resources Division (ENRD) of the U...

202-789-6033
Grant Tolley Environmental Litigation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Washington, DC
Associate

Grant Tolley maintains a diverse environmental litigation and regulatory practice, working with clients nationwide across industrial sectors. 

Grant joined the firm following his graduation from the Georgetown University Law Center.

Prior to joining Beveridge & Diamond, Grant served as a law clerk for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and worked as a student attorney for the Institute for Public Representation, Environmental Litigation Clinic, where he prepared an amicus brief in support of EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Update in a challenge pending before...

202-789-6063
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