Today, the Obama administration issued a statement opposing the “TRAIN” Act (H.R. 2401) which would block landmark public health standards under the Clean Air Act and put tens of thousands of lives at risk.
"Today the Obama administration stood up to the polluters and stood up for Americans' health by opposing the TRAIN Act,” said Lauren Randall, Clean Air Associate for Environment America. “We urge members of Congress to follow the President's lead and save lives by rejecting this dangerous piece of legislation.”
The TRAIN Act (H.R. 2401) consists of two provisions that threaten the public’s 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.
Finally, some in Congress – including Representative Whitfield (R-KY) and Representative Latta (R-OH) - are working to make the bill even worse by proposing two amendments that would cut out the heart of the Clean Air Act. Representative Latta’s amendment would stop EPA from relying on science alone when setting clean air standards, and Representative Whitfield’s amendment could delay critical Clean Air Act standards for 8 years, if not indefinitely.
“For the safety our children, we must reject all attacks on the Clean Air Act, and particularly a bill as hazardous as this one,” said Randall. “We applaud the Obama administration for standing up for public health and call on all members of Congress to do the same.”
*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/.