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Supreme Court hands down climate change ruling on final day of term

July 1, 2022


The Supreme Court’s recent decision to limit the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency has many worried about whether the Biden administration can reach its climate goals. Read the transcript here.

More history was made on the Court’s final day of the term when Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman on the court. She was sworn in Thursday by Justice Stephen Breyer, who retired. For more on this story, watch the video here and for the transcript, click here

Five Facts

  • Who was featured in this segment?
  • What concerns about fighting climate change in light of the Court’s ruling were discussed in the video? 
  • How can people concerned about the environment continue to fight greenhouse emissions, according to this piece?
  • Where did the climate change case originate?
  • Why will the Court’s ruling disproportionately affect low-income people and people of color, according to Mustafa Santiago Ali?

Focus Questions

The nine Supreme Court justices are unelected, but they hold a large amount of power. What might be some benefits of this aspect of our system? (For instance, why might it make sense for judges not to run for election?) What are some drawbacks? 

Media Literacy: If you were to create a longer piece on the Supreme Court’s decision on climate change, who are some additional people or groups whose perspectives you would want to include?

For More

What students can do: Watch the two videos below. The first highlights the perspective of the state of West Virginia, who sought to curb the power of the EPA. The second features that agency’s administrator. Discuss the arguments presented in the videos with a family member or friend, and ask which speaker’s argument resonates with them and why.

Leo Kamin, a rising sophomore at Amherst College and intern at NewsHour Classroom, wrote today’s Daily News Lesson with editing by Evelyn Chi.

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