Quotes from Health and Medical Groups in Response to New Soot Standard

Washington, D.C. (December 14, 2012)

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America

"On behalf of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, I commend the United States Environmental Protection Agency's adoption of air quality standards for particulate matter that fully protect the public's health. This new standard assures that the 20 million Americans with asthma, including 6.7 million children, are breathing healthy air that does not damage their lungs and cause asthma attacks. Today the EPA took a stand against soot to protect the health of those most at risk and saved thousands of lives." -Bill McLin, President and CEO, Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA)

Media Inquiries Contact: Angel Waldron, AAFA External Affairs, 202-466-7643 x248, angel@aafa.org

American Heart Association

"EPA's actions today will help to ensure that Americans are not risking their heart health by simply taking a breath," said Barry A. Franklin, Ph.D., past American Heart Association Board of Trustees member and author of the Association's original scientific statement on fine particulate matter. "We know that exposure to fine particulate matter can trigger cardiovascular problems and reduce life expectancy. With cardiovascular disease being the No. 1 killer in the United States, we applaud the EPA for its commitment to protecting public health by reducing air pollution."

Media Inquiries Contact: Christopher Guizlo, Associate Communications Manager, American Heart Association, 202-785-7935, chris.guizlo@heart.org

American Lung Association

"We know clearly that particle pollution is harmful at levels well below those previously deemed to be safe. Particle pollution causes premature deaths and illness, threatening the millions of Americans who breathe high levels of it. By setting a more protective standard, the EPA is stating that we as a nation must protect the health of the public by cleaning up even more of this lethal pollutant. Reducing particle pollution will prevent heart attacks and asthma attacks, and will keep children out of the emergency room and hospitals. It will save lives." - Norman H. Edelman, MD, Chief Medical Officer for the American Lung Association

Media Inquiries Contact: Mary Havell McGinty, 202-715-3459, mary.havell@lung.org

American Public Health Association

"The American Public Health Association hails EPA's strengthening of limits for fine particulate matter, or soot, from power plants and other sources that contributes to a range of serious health challenges, including heart attack, stroke and asthma, and even leads to death. This rule, which protects communities across the country from dirty, harmful air, is a public health victory for everyone, but particularly for the most vulnerable among us such as children, the elderly and those suffering from chronic health conditions." – Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E), executive director of American Public Health Association

Media Inquiries Contact: David Fouse, 202-777-2501, david.fouse@apha.org

March of Dimes

"Cleaner air will mean healthier mothers and babies," stated Jennifer L. Howse, President of the March of Dimes. "Soot is implicated in health risks for pregnant women, including preterm birth, as well as for their infants. The majority of lung development occurs after birth, so clean air is important for all babies but especially for preemies, who are more likely to suffer from respiratory issues. Given that 1 in 8 infants is born premature in our nation, this rule will have a significant impact on maternal and child health."

Media Inquiries Contact: Nate Brown, 202-659-1800 or nbrown@marchofdimes.com

National Association of County and City Health Officials

"On behalf of America's 2,800 local health departments, NACCHO applauds the Environmental Protection Agency's updated, evidence-based standard on particulate matter. The updated standard prevents illness and helps reduce health care costs. Local health departments lay the groundwork in a community for the kinds of choices that keep people healthy and safe, such as implementing smoke-free air laws, and partner with state and federal agencies to ensure people have clean air to breathe." - Robert M. Pestronk, MPH, Executive Director, National Association of County and City Health Officials

Media Inquiries Contact: Alisa Blum, Director of Media and Public Relations, National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), 202-507-4277, ablum@naccho.org

Trust for America's Health

"Today's finalized soot standard is an important step in guaranteeing the promise of the Clean Air Act. Full implementation of the Act will ensure our nation's environment will be safer, people will be healthier, and the country will save billions." – Jeff Levi, PhD, executive director of Trust for America's Health

Media Inquiries Contact: Albert Lang, Communications Manager, Trust for America's Health, 202-223-9870 x21, alang@tfah.org