Lung Association Urges Senate to Reject H.R. 2042
Bill would threaten EPA’s ability to protect public health and address climate change
(June 24, 2015) - WASHINGTON, D.C.
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2042, The Ratepayer Protection Act, a bill that would cripple the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ability to protect public health from the carbon pollution that causes climate change. Harold P. Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association, issued the following statement in response:
"The American Lung Association is disappointed that the House of Representatives passed this legislation today. Contrary to its name, this bill does not protect the public. It puts lives at risk by gutting the Clean Power Plan, EPA's proposed plan to reduce the carbon pollution from power plants that worsens climate change. Climate change endangers public health now, including creating warmer temperatures that make dangerous levels of ozone and particle pollution more likely. The Clean Power Plan will set crucial limits on carbon pollution, and prevent up to 6,600 premature deaths and 150,000 asthma attacks every year by 2030 by reducing other pollutants as well.
"This legislation is the latest attack by polluters and their allies in Congress to undermine the EPA’s ability to protect the air we breathe. The American Lung Association urges the Senate to reject the House bill and stand up against all efforts to block, weaken, or delay critical clean air protections.
"Specifically, H.R. 2042 would bar EPA from enforcing the Clean Power Plan until all court actions on the rule are final, including further review and appeal. Climate change is an urgent problem, and such unnecessary delay could take years. The legislation will also allow governors to opt out of cleaning up carbon pollution in their states, denying their residents - and those of downwind states - the lifesaving benefits of the Clean Power Plan.
"The proposed Clean Power Plan would save lives and take a crucial step forward in cleaning up dangerous carbon pollution from power plants, the country's largest single source of carbon pollution. We hope the Senate will make the right decision by putting the lives of their constituents first and rejecting H.R. 2042."