GreenLatinos Distressed Over Recent SCOTUS Rulings

Recent SCOTUS rulings are endangering Latino/a/e communities by rolling back protections and empowering big oil companies.

WASHINGTON—On Friday, June 28th, the United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS) released its decision in favor of the plaintiffs in two monumentally consequential cases relating to the power of federal agencies: Relentless, Inc. v. Department of Commerce and Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo. 

In its decisions in these cases, SCOTUS gutted the Chevron doctrine. The Chevron doctrine provided long-standing precedent that required courts to defer to reasonable interpretations of federal agency staff like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as the subject matter experts, to implement and administer laws in cases of ambiguity in federal statutes. The Court's removal of this principle has greatly facilitated regulated industries in contesting crucial public protections in court. Additionally, last week, the Supreme Court issued a ruling in Ohio v. EPA that halts the Environmental Protection Agency’s Good Neighbor Plan, a critical rule mandating "upwind states" to cut emissions impacting air quality in "downwind states," adding another hit to the protection for vital clean air and environmental justice in the U.S. 

These decisions effectively allow big oil companies and their corporate cronies to continue polluting the air and water our comunidades consume daily. GreenLatinos is deeply distressed by the recent decision and gravely concerned about the ongoing damage this Supreme Court is inflicting on our Latine communities nationwide. 

Following the release of this SCOTUS decision effectively overturning Chevron, GreenLatinos Climate Justice & Clean Air Program Director Irene Burga released the following statement: 

"This onslaught of harmful rulings by the Supreme Court in recent days is an egregious assault on environmental justice communities and our environment. By stripping federal agencies of their authority to interpret unclear environmental laws, it destroys years of progress on clean air, water, and climate change.

This decision is especially cruel for marginalized communities facing the worst environmental degradation. For decades, federal agencies have crafted rules to protect low-income and minority communities from pollution and climate change. The Chevron deference doctrine was vital in this fight for justice. Now, with this decision, polluting industries can wage endless legal battles against essential safeguards, knowing sympathetic judges will undermine expert agencies. As the dissenting justices warned, this ruling 'calls into question' the very rules protecting our air, water, and climate.

GreenLatinos will continue to fight for environmental justice communities and will not stay silent as this corrupt court threatens our environment and communities.”


About GreenLatinos

GreenLatinos (NOTE: GreenLatinos is ONE WORD) is an active comunidad of Latino/a/e leaders, emboldened by the power and wisdom of our culture, united to demand equity and dismantle racism, resourced to win our environmental, conservation, and climate justice battles, and driven to secure our political, economic, cultural, and environmental liberation.

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