National Action Network Applauds the US Environmental Protection Agency—
For Immediate Release
August 3, 2015
Contact: Liz Kenigsberg/Dominic Hawkins
National Action Network Applauds the US Environmental Protection Agency
NEW YORK – National Action Network has released the following statement in response to the U.S. Environmental Protect Agency’s (EPA) steps to limit harmful carbon pollution, which fuels climate change and threatens the public health and safety of our communities. There is an undeniable need to take meaningful action to combat climate change. To date, there are no federal guidelines set on power plants limiting levels of carbon pollution that is dumped into the air. Carbon pollution causes climate change and a host of extreme threats to public health for Americans.
African-Americans are more likely to live near environmental hazards – like power plants – and be exposed to hazardous air pollution, including higher levels of nitrogen oxide, ozone, particulate matter and carbon dioxide, than their white counterparts. The presence of these pollutants increases rates of asthma, respiratory illness and cardiovascular disease. Newborn babies are at increased risk for lifelong health issues and prolonged pollution exposure inn adults and adolescents can potentially cause missed days of work and school. We cannot afford this. Black children already have the highest rate of asthma in the nation and our infant mortality rate is nearly double the national average.
This is why the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, which is days away from finalization, is so vital. For the first time in U.S. history, the EPA will set federal limits on carbon pollution from existing power plants, fund innovative mechanisms to establish clean, renewable energy sources and boosts cost-saving energy efficiencies.
The Clean Power Plan is estimated to provide up to $93 billion in climate and public health benefits. The EPA projects that the new standards could help avoid up to 6,600 premature deaths and up to 150,000 asthma attacks in children annually by 2030. It will also help prevent thousands of heart attacks, hospital admissions and missed work and school days every year.
Climate change is not a future generation’s problem. It affects our communities and our health each and every day and we need to take advantage of the opportunity presented by the EPA’s Clean Power Plan to mitigate global climate change and pollution borne health issues.