Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the “TRAIN” Act (H.R. 2401), legislation that would indefinitely delay the clean-up of toxic power plant pollution. The legislation could result in 139,500 lives lost due to smog, soot, and toxic air pollution.*
“Everyone should be able to breathe clean air, but this bill puts tens of thousands of lives at risk by blocking the clean-up of deadly air pollution,” said Ewa Krason, Field Organizer for Environment Maryland. “Marylanders certainly deserve better, and we applaud Congressmen Ruppersberger, Cummings and Sarbanes for standing up for public health and opposing this dangerous legislation.”
The TRAIN Act consists of two provisions that threaten Marylanders’ right to breathe clean air. First, it would indefinitely delay two critical Clean Air Act standards that limit soot, smog, mercury and other toxic pollutants from power plants. The indefinite delay of these standards would mean that every year, Americans would suffer more asthma attacks, more hospitalizations, and more premature deaths from air pollution.
Additionally, the bill requires that a panel of cabinet members review all standards issued by the Environmental Protection Agency – a function that is already performed by two existing agencies. This needless red tape will cost taxpayers money and could result in further delay of the clean-up of deadly air pollution.
“For the safety our children, it is unacceptable that the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill as hazardous as this one,” said Krason. “We applaud Congressmen Ruppersberger, Cummings, and Sarbanes for fighting for Marylanders’ health instead of siding with the polluters. We urge Senators Mikulski and Cardin to oppose this dangerous bill.”
*More information about the health impacts of this and other legislative attacks on the Clean Air Act can be found at http://www.dirtysecrets.org/legislation-table/.