Emissions Battle

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – (AP) A state district judge has issued a decision that temporarily puts the brakes on an environmental group's effort to petition New Mexico regulators for a greenhouse gas emissions cap.

New Mexico's largest utility, three state lawmakers and other industry groups sued in January to stop a state regulatory panel from considering a petition by New Energy Economy for an emissions cap in New Mexico.

The group countered with a motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

Judge William Shoobridge rejected that motion Tuesday. Instead, he granted a preliminary injunction prohibiting the state Environmental Improvement Board from conducting further proceedings on New Energy Economy's petition until he makes a final ruling on the lawsuit.

It was not immediately clear whether New Energy Economy or the board would appeal the judge's decision.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.