U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

Case Status


Oral Argument Date

September 26, 2016


Case Updates

Petitions for review dismissed as moot

September 17, 2019

The D.C. Circuit dismissed the petitions for review of the EPA’s 2015 Clean Power Plan as moot in light of the EPA’s 2019 Affordable Clean Energy Rule, which rescinds the 2015 Clean Power Plan. The U.S. Chamber and other petitioners asked for the D.C. Circuit to dismiss the petitions as moot in light of the Affordable Clean Energy rule, which took effect on September 6, 2019. The U.S. Chamber is also an intervenor in support of the EPA’s Affordable Clean Energy Rule in separate litigation.

U.S. Chamber and coalition of petitioners file reply in support of motion to dismiss litigation against Clean Power Plan as moot in light of EPA’s final rescission of the Clean Power Plan

August 01, 2019

Click here to view the reply brief. The petitioners previously moved to dismiss the pending litigation as moot, as new litigation against the Trump administration’s rule rescinding and replacing the Clean Power Plan is now getting under way. The Clean Power Plan has been enjoined since February of 2016, after the U.S. Chamber and others successfully obtained a stay from the U.S. Supreme Court.

Clean Power Plan petitioners move to dismiss their challenges to Clean Power Plan as moot

July 15, 2019

The Clean Power Plan petitioners, including the U.S. Chamber, jointly moved to dismiss their challenges to Clean Power Plan as moot. The D.C. Circuit has held the cases challenging the plan in abeyance since April of 2017, pending the Trump Administration’s then announced efforts to repeal and replace the plan. On July 8, 2019, the administration published the final version of a rule that completely rescinds the Clean Power Plan and separately replaces it with new guidelines for emissions standards for existing coal-fired power plants. If granted, the motion would terminate the Clean Power Plan litigation as moot. Litigation over the Trump administration’s replacement rule (known as the Affordable Clean Energy Plan) would move forward separately.

En banc D.C. Circuit holds Clean Power Plan case in abeyance for an additional 60 days

August 08, 2017

Click here to view the order.

Supreme Court grants stay

February 09, 2016

Although the D.C. Circuit denied the stay motion, the U.S. Supreme Court subsequently granted a stay of the rule. The Supreme Court's stay of the rule will remain in force through the period of judicial review. For details and briefing of the Supreme Court stay applications, please visit this page.

Motion for stay denied by D.C. Circuit

January 21, 2016

The D.C. Circuit denied the motion for stay and granted the motion for expedited briefing.

U.S. Chamber files lawsuit challenging Clean Power Plan

October 23, 2015

The U.S. Chamber, joined by over a dozen business groups, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to challenge the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) rule regulating greenhouse gas emissions under Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act—an unprecedented takeover of the electricity sector. Because the rule is already causing irreparable harm to businesses and communities across the country, the Chamber also asked the D.C. Circuit to stay implementation of the rule until judicial review has been completed, and asked the court for expedited review. The D.C. Circuit granted expedited review, and the U.S. Supreme Court granted a stay.

The Chamber argues that the rule is unlawful and a bad deal for America. It will drive up electricity costs for businesses, consumers and families, impose tens of billions in annual compliance costs, and reduce our nation’s global competitiveness—without any significant reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions. According to EPA’s own predictions, if this rule had been allowed to go into effect on EPA’s schedule, numerous electricity plants would have been forced to shut down within the next year, causing job losses in communities throughout the country.

The Chamber has argued that EPA failed to take into account the serious concerns expressed by states and industry regarding the rule’s implementation, fairness, and legality. The Chamber supports further environmental progress guided by what has already worked: gains in efficiency, new technologies, market-based increases in the use of natural gas and renewable fuels, a continued role for nuclear power, and improved processes for developing and using our nation’s vast coal and oil and gas resources. Indeed, the United States is the only major country that has actually and substantially reduced its CO2 emissions while continuing to grow its economy.

The Chamber also argues that not only are these regulations bad for our economy, they also represent a massive executive power grab. EPA completely bypassed the legislative branch, basing its 2,000-page rule on roughly 300 words in the Clean Air Act and including a host of policies that have already been considered and rejected by Congress.

In this case, the U.S. Chamber and its coalition partners are represented by Peter D. Keisler, Roger R. Martella, Jr., C. Frederick Beckner III, Ryan C. Morris, Joel F. Visser, and Paul J. Ray of Sidley Austin LLP.

The Chamber's lawsuit has been consolidated with State of West Virginia, et al. v. EPA, the lead caption for the consolidated litigation challenging ESPS.

Case Documents