Sept. 16, 2019 by Daniel Farber

A Welcome Victory in the D.C. Circuit

Originally published on Legal Planet.

Last Friday, the D.C. Circuit decided Wisconsin v. EPA. The federal appeals court rejected industry attacks on a regulation dealing with interstate air pollution but accepted an argument by environmental groups that the regulation was too weak. Last week also featured depressing examples of the drumbeat of Trump administration rollbacks, so it was especially nice to have some good news.

I hesitated about whether to write something about the case because the opinion makes for dull reading, unless you happen to have been deeply involved in the case. As I thought about it, however, I decided that the undramatic features of the case – the ways in which it was pretty routine – were themselves worth writing about. The opinion shows what it looks like when smart, capable judges apply themselves to complex technical issues. It's not glamorous, but it's crucial to the successful workings of government.

Let me begin right at the top of page 1. Immediately under the name of the court is a line that reads:

"Argued October 3, 2018       Decided September 13, 2019."

So, almost a year went by between the oral argument and the court's decision. That's a fairly average …

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Sept. 16, 2019

A Welcome Victory in the D.C. Circuit