In “Profoundly Flawed” Decision, Judge Blocks Federal Government from Considering Best Available Information About Monetized Harm of Climate Pollution

February 11, 2022
Sharyn Stein, 202-905-5718,

(February 11, 2022) In a profoundly flawed decision today, a federal judge in Louisiana ruled that the federal government is prohibited from relying on the most up-to-date information about the serious harms of climate pollution -- monetized through a measure referred to as the “social cost of carbon” -- when adopting common sense solutions.

“This opinion is bizarre, profoundly flawed and runs roughshod over American law,” said Vickie Patton, General Counsel for Environmental Defense Fund. “It attempts to block federal agencies from using the best available information in safeguarding the American people from climate pollution. That would put people’s lives and health at risk. This decision is reckless with basic facts and radically disregards well-established Constitutional guardrails on judicial power.”

Judge James Cain of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana issued a preliminary injunction prohibiting the federal government from relying on the best available scientific and economic analysis -- analysis based on extensive peer-reviewed information documenting and monetizing the serious harm caused by climate pollutants like carbon dioxide and methane.

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