I believe you want to know what is happening with regard to YOUR Air, Water and Health in America. This is C-SPAN coverage of my US Senator, Tom Udall, as he speaks to the Senate on this immediate issue. I do not intend to play politics here, I trust you’ll find this short video enlightening. I think we all basically agree. Everyone one of us needs to breathe. — Robert
“The Clean Air Act has been a standard for successful public health policy for more than 40 years. Signed into law by President Nixon with strong bipartisan support for decades, this law has helped keep the air we breathe free from pollution.
Just last year, the law protected American families from 1.7 million asthma attacks, 130,000 heart attacks and 86,000 emergency room visits.
Despite the Environmental Protection Agency’s best efforts, in New Mexico alone, over 170,000 residents still suffer from asthma, and over 47,000 of those are children. Thousands also suffer from other respiratory illnesses.
Given those statistics, some might find it hard to believe that there’s a movement afoot on Capitol Hill to roll back these important protections on air quality — to protect polluters, not people.
The House budget bill calls for the removal of important regulations already in place, putting hundreds of thousands of New Mexicans at greater risk from pollution from power plants, oil refineries, and cement kilns.
This is a step backward, not forward, and I recently took to the Senate floor to defend the Clean Air Act. You can watch that video above.
Yesterday, I also joined 18 senators to express this concern to President Obama and today I co-sponsored a resolution reaffirming the authority of the Clean Air Act.
The Clean Air Act has cut six major pollutants by over 40 percent, but air pollution still claims 70,000 lives per year, three times that of car accidents. If we weaken the Act, unfortunately that number will rise.
It also protects pregnant mothers and developing children from mercury, a neuro-toxin that creates problems in brain development, including attention and memory problems.
Mercury comes out of smoke stacks into the air, deposits into our water, and is also consumed in the fish that we eat.
Overall, the House Continuing Resolution undermines the Clean Air Act, leading to more pollution, asthma, hospital visits, and less healthy children.
It’s no surprise that there is widespread opposition to efforts to roll back this important law’s protections:
“Please fulfill the promise of clean, healthy air for all Americans to breathe. Support full implementation of the Clean Air Act and resist any efforts to weaken, delay or block progress toward a healthier future for all Americans.”
- Senator Tom Udall