WASHINGTON, DC | November 19, 2021
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act, which includes policies that will improve air quality, address climate change, and improve access to quality and affordable healthcare.
The American Lung Association’s President and CEO Harold Wimmer issued this statement regarding House passage of the Build Back Better Act:
“Today’s vote is a big step forward in investing in a healthier future with the inclusion of key programs that would protect lung health.
“Build Back Better is the best opportunity for Congress to pass bold climate policies that will reduce emissions and improve air quality, benefiting health right now and into the future. We applaud the inclusion of a 10-year expansion of clean energy tax credits that will help transition the country to cleaner, renewable energy sources like wind and solar, and investments in zero-emission passenger and commercial vehicles that will aid in the nationwide transition to a cleaner transportation-sector. Also, a program to reduce methane emissions that is complimentary to regulatory action is a huge step towards reducing one of the most potent greenhouse gases, helping to reduce the potential for catastrophic climate change impacts.
“Additionally, we celebrate commitments to equity in the Build Back Better Act by addressing environmental injustices and the barriers to healthcare that exist for millions of low-income individuals and people of color.
“The U.S. currently has too many people who do not have access to quality and affordable health insurance. While there is significant work ahead of us, we are thankful that this bill expands healthcare tax credits until 2025 for millions of Americans, and that it also improves access to healthcare for children in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Further, we are very pleased to see the inclusion of provisions to ensure access to vaccines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for all Medicaid beneficiaries.
“We are pleased that the House-passed bill includes a provision to close the e-cigarette tax loophole. This provision will help reduce tobacco use and vaping, particularly among youth.
“We applaud the House for taking on this significant task. The American Lung Association urges the Senate to quickly pass the Build Back Better Act to deliver these health benefits to communities nationwide.”
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, which has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and is a Platinum-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.
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