Social momentum and true bipartisan negotiation led to the groundbreaking clean air law. It was a good starting point, but some things got derailed along the way. George W. Bush became President and he and his ‘less government regulation is better’ administration repealed part of the law, replacing it with that cap and trade thing that’s really more environmental sleight of hand than a commitment to better air quality. Instead of requiring those power plants to adjust their emissions, including mercury and other toxic chemicals, companies polluting the air can get around required fixes by buying or trading credits with another power plant. If Company A pollutes in one area but Company B pollutes less, they can buy credits from Company B to make up for their pollution but neither power plant has to take any significant change in actually protecting the atmosphere. It looks like environmental protection on paper, but it doesn’t feel that way in our lungs.
But a recent court order reversed the Bush administration’s policy, allowing the Environmental Protection Agency finally to issue and implement rules that could really give us cleaner air. Not surprisingly, many lawmakers on Capitol Hill don’t like that idea and are working actively to move us back to the cap and trade days.
Am I the only one who thinks that doesn’t sound like a recipe for cleaner air?
For 50 days, Uncle Sam actually wants to hear what you think and will be taking comments from everyone.
One mom can make a huge difference, not only by submitting a comment during the comment period, but if one mom asks another who asks another, think of the millions of us who, if we take just a few minutes to let the EPA know directly how we feel about the importance of clean air, can battle those lobbyists who are paid to keep the status quo in place until we don’t have any clean air left.