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US DOE must act on new standards

USA: A federal judge has ordered President Trump’s administration to implement new energy efficiency standards on portable air conditioners and other equipment.

The proposed energy efficiency standards for portable air conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies, air compressors, and commercial packaged boilers were formulated under Barack Obama’s presidency and due to be implemented in March last year. However, new energy secretary Rick Perry has delayed their publication.

California attorney general Xavier Becerra and his New York counterpart Eric Schneiderman led a coalition of 13 attorney generals that sued the US Department of Energy (DOE) in June, claiming the refusal to implement the standards were in violation of the law.

Yesterday Becerra and Schneiderman secured a federal court ruling requiring national energy efficiency standards go into effect. The US District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that DOE violated its error correction regulation under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act by failing to publish the finalised energy efficiency standards in the Federal Register.

The DOE has now been ordered to publish the rules within 28 days.

“Today’s ruling means that the Trump administration may no longer block common-sense energy efficiency standards. This is a tremendous victory for the American people and for our planet,” said Becerra. “The California Department of Justice will continue to hold the Trump administration, indeed all polluters, accountable. Our citizens have a right to be part of the climate change solution.”

“The Trump administration has made a point of rolling back basic, common sense energy efficiency standards – putting polluters before everyday New Yorkers and Americans,” said Schneiderman. “Our coalition of attorneys general has made clear that we’ll use every tool at our disposal to protect our public health, our environment, and consumers’ pocketbooks. Today’s court decision is an important victory in fighting back against the Trump Administration’s ‘polluter first’ agenda.”

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