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State Court Issues Injunction on RGGI Plan

State Court Issues Injunction on RGGI Plan

On July 8, 2022, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court issued a preliminary injunction stopping Pennsylvania from enforcing the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) just days after the state was set to begin implementing the regulation on July 1. 

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative regulation, which was published by the Department of Environmental Protection on April 23, 2023, requires that Pennsylvania power plants pay a tax for each ton of carbon dioxide they emit. A report by the Independent Fiscal Office (IFO) said that electricity generators could spend upwards of $781 million annually on emissions credits at the RGGI auctions, warning lawmakers that "those costs would be pushed through to final consumers."

PMTA is concerned about increased costs of electricity at a time when inflationary and supply chain pressures are already straining all businesses, including those in the trucking industry. As the industry begins to consider electrification in the future, these costs will become ever more important to maintaining operations and profitability. RGGI would put Pennsylvania, a resource-rich state, at a competitive disadvantage. 

The state legislature voted numerous times to block RGGI from taking effect, the most recent attempt earlier this year when the Senate fell one vote short of the two-thirds vote required to override Governor Wolf's veto of a bill to stop RGGI. 

Legal challenges filed by the General Assembly, power producers, and trade unions that staff the power plants have proven initially successful in stopping the regulation from taking effect. 

The temporary injunction allows impacted power plants to continue to operate competitively until a final decision by be reached in the courts. 

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