Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Clean Air Act Digest, 3.24.11

US Climate Action Network


1. Legislation:


As we reported last week, the full House Energy and Commerce Committee passed Upton’s Dirty Air Act on a largely party line vote of 34-19.  In early March, Rep. Upton (R-MI), chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced this legislation to permanently block the EPA’s ability to limit carbon pollution. The bill, H.R. 910 has been moving quickly and is expected to be on the House Floor the week of April 4th.


The Upton Dirty Air Act is now in play in the Senate as well, introduced by Sen. Inhofe (R-OK) as S.482. And last week Senate Minority Leader McConnell (R-KY), announced he wants to add the Upton-Inhofe language to an unrelated bill that reauthorizes two research programs for small business. In response, Sen. Rockefeller (D-WV) says he will also try to add his bill which would impose a two-year ban on EPA  taking any action to limit carbon and methane pollution from stationary sources under the Clean Air Act — a delay that could easily become permanent. Finally, Sen. Baucus (D-MT) is circulating an amendment to permanently exempt the largest carbon dioxide sources from EPA permitting requirements unless the source was also a very large source of other air pollutants. The amendment would also prevent the EPA from considering emissions resulting from land use changes. All three of these bad amendments are expected to come up next week when the Senate reconvenes.


While the Clean Air Act is under attack in both Houses of Congress, the most immediate threat is in the Senate.

Several senators have launched attacks to block the Environmental Protection Agency from reducing carbon pollution. For instance, Sen. McConnell (R-KY) wants to add the Upton-Inhofe language to an unrelated small business bill. Sen. Rockefeller (D-WV) is proposing to block the EPA from limiting global warming pollution for two years — a delay that could easily become permanent. And Sen. Baucus (D-MT) is proposing to exempt some of the largest carbon pollution sources from having to limit their pollution.

It is likely that the Senate will vote on these harmful amendments as early as March 29th.Tell your Senator to stand up for your health and clean air! See NRDC’s full action alert or contact Jamie Consuegra jconsuegra@nrdc.org for more information.


Comments for Mercury and Air Toxics Standards:

Last week, EPA announced the most important actions to clean up air pollution from dirty coal-burning power plants since the Clean Air Act was last updated in 1990.  EPA’s proposed mercury and air toxics standards for power plants that burn coal and oil are projected to save as many as 17,000 American lives every year by 2015. There is no official deadline yet but once officially submitted into the Federal Register we will have 60 days to submit comments. Please see the Sierra Club’s factsheet and sample action alert and comment card for more information.


Public Hearings for Mercury Air Toxics Standard:

EPA will hold public hearings on the recently released Mercury Air Toxics Standard in Philadelphia, Chicago and Atlanta. Details on the timing and location for those hearings will be made available soon in a separate Federal Register notice and posted at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/powerplanttoxics/.


Chairman Fred Gets an Earful, Natural Resources Defense Council Blog 3.23.11

Why the EPA Is Important for Latino Families, Center for American Progress Report 3.23.11

Mercury is Toxic, Coal Plants Emit Mercury Pollution, Sierra Club Fact Sheet 3.2011

Cleaner Air, Healthier People: The Importance of Strong Emission
Standards for Cement Plants
, Earthjustice Fact Sheet 1.10.11

USCAN’s Clean Air Act Pages include a compilation of member materials.

Clean Air Act Digest is a publication put together by US Climate Action Network and Natural Resources Defense Council please contact Kate Smolski at ksmolski@climatenetwork.org for more details. Click here for past issues.