Turtle Island: The Supreme Court delivered a devasting blow to the power of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ability to curb climate change today. The court ruled the EPA does not have broad authority to shift the nation’s energy production away from coal-burning power plants toward solar and wind power and curbed it's power in limiting emissions from existing power plants.
The court sided with representatives from the coal industry paired with a coalition of conservative states despite the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability warned that the catastrophic impacts of climate breakdown will soon outpace humanity’s ability to adapt to it. As they prepare to rule on this landmark decision, New Mexico is on fire, at least 2,000 cattle have died following a heat wave in southwestern Kansas, the Colorado River is drying out and is in major crisis, and Texas is in a record drought with its Frio River flow dropping to zero.
This decision was preceded by the SCOTUS ruling in Oklahoma v. Castro-Huerta, which determined the state of Oklahoma has concurrent jurisdiction with sovereign tribal nations. Although the ruling is applied to cases when the perpetrator of a crime committed on tribal land is non-native, the decision effectively chips away at tribal sovereignty and could potentially open regulatory doors for states like Oklahoma seeking to railroad fossil fuel projects through tribal lands.
Statement from Ikiya Collective on West Virginia v. EPA
Climate chaos and the devastation of its impact are here. Indigenous knowledge and leadership are key to addressing the climate crisis. Yesterday, SCOTUS delivered a blow to our tribal sovereignty. last week it was bodily sovereignty and our Miranda rights. We know violence to our land, air and water results in violence to our body. Climate change and bodily sovereignty are directly related. Voting and party lines will not get us out of the mess white supremacy and capitalism has created. Fossil fuel pollution and the denial of bodily sovereignty create disproportionate harm on Black, Indigenous, low income and communities of the global majority. The unjust political and corporate greed seeking to block reproductive justice and climate justice are one in the same evil. We will not sit idly by.