FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 25, 2023
Contact: Jama Joseph, email@example.com, (646) 951-1648
Washington– As another brutal “heat dome” settles across the south and southwest, subjecting over 100 million people to extreme temperatures and the worsening air pollution that comes with it, the EPA’s surprising backtrack on previously announced, stronger new ozone and smog rules is shocking, and deeply disappointing.
In a year that’s seen toxic air pollution and ground-level ozone emissions spike across the country in communities hammered by extreme heat, the delay leaves in place scientifically unsound Trump era rules that spit in the face of environmental justice. Toxic ozone gas is bad for all of us, and it’s notorious for triggering asthma attacks in children and causing breathing difficulties for those already suffering from chronic respiratory disease—health conditions unjustly and disproportionately clustered in frontline communities.
It is clear that the Clean Air Act Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) review has identified several priorities on the Ozone standard, and it should be integrated in the analysis to inform the current standards. This appears to be a political move to delay progress and are ignoring the public health implications, specifically to our BIPOC and environmental justice communities. We cannot delay justice, our communities are struggling to breathe.
EPA’s unexpected delay leaves tens of millions of Americans facing harmful air pollution, and its impact on public health, potentially for years more to come, is a position deeply at odds with the administration’s stated commitment to environmental justice. Our nationwide coalition calls on the EPA and Administrator Regan to reconsider this ill-advised, dangerous move.
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Clean Air For The Long Haul, a nationwide coalition of environmental justice groups, coordinates federal rulemaking campaigns, centering overburdened communities, to reduce air pollution from power plants, cars, and trucks. The coalition seeks to catalyze the environmental justice movement through federal emissions reductions targeting United States power and transportation sectors. Coalition member organizations include: Alternatives for Community and Environment, Clear Air NOW, Coalition of Community Organizations, Deep South Center for Environmental Justice, Duwamish River Community Coalition, Greendoor Initiative, New Jersey Environmental Justice Alliance, South Bronx Unite, Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services, WE ACT for Environmental Justice, West End Revitalization Association, and Wisconsin Green Muslims.