Nat'l Assoc. of Manufacturers v. EPA, et al., No. 13-1069 (D.C. Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Petitioners challenged the EPA's Final Rule regarding the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for fine particulate matter under Section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), 42 U.S.C. 7607(b)(1), 7607(d)(9). The court concluded that the EPA did not fail to request comment on whether to revise the NAAQS where the preamble to the EPA's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking requested comments on "all issues" related to the agency's proposal to lower the level of the particulate matter NAAQS; the EPA offered reasoned explanations for how it approached and weighed the evidence, and why the scientific evidence supported revision of the NAAQS; and the court rejected petitioners' contention that the EPA did not respond when petitioners' comments cited certain studies that supported retention of the existing particulate matter NAAQS because the EPA acted within its discretion by addressing the more significant comments. The court also concluded that the EPA fulfilled its obligation to reasonably explain its decision not to employ spatial averaging. The court rejected petitioners' challenge to the EPA's new requirement that States place monitors near heavily trafficked roads in large metropolitan areas where the statutory scheme granted the EPA substantial discretion and the EPA's decision and explanation were at least reasonable. Finally, the court rejected petitioners' argument that the EPA should not have issued, or at least should not require compliance with, the 2013 NAAQS without first providing States and regulated certain implementation guidance. Accordingly, the court denied the petitions for review.