Court Casts Doubt On States’ Global Warming Suit

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The U.S. Supreme Court appeared deeply skeptical Tuesday about allowing states to sue electric utilities to force cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

Both conservative and liberal justices questioned whether a federal judge could deal with the complex issue of global warming. They suggested the topic is better left to Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The court heard arguments over whether to end the lawsuit brought by Vermont and five other states, New York City and three conservation groups. The suit was filed against four private companies and the federal Tennessee Valley Authority.

The Obama administration has joined with the companies in asking the high court to throw out the lawsuit. The administration says EPA already is considering setting emission standards that would accomplish what the states are seeking.

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