By: Ana Rios, New Mexico State Coordinator, Moms Clean Air Force
Date: May 2, 2023
About: Environmental Protection Agency Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2022-0985
To: Environmental Protection Agency
Thank you for the opportunity to testify today. My name is Ana Rios. I am the New Mexico field organizer for Moms Clean Air Force and its Latino engagement program, EcoMadres. I'm here representing the nearly 20,000 members in my state and to testify in support of the EPA’s proposed greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations for heavy-duty vehicles, calling on EPA to finalize strong clean truck standards this year. Stronger transportation standards are crucial for protecting the health of our children and communities, and it is urgent that we act now.
I live in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with my three children. We live in the San Jose neighborhood, very well known in the city as a low-income area where people of color and Latino communities live, most notably because it is surrounded by pollution. My house is next to a heavy-duty vehicle company, less than a mile from an interstate highway, and a couple of miles away from the two interstate highways junction that cross through the city. As a Latino family, we are overburdened by the exposure to pollution from the transportation sector. In addition, my home is located a few steps from the railroad tracks and approximately three miles away from the airport. Also, it is important to point out that New Mexico is experiencing Impacts of climate change including more severe heat waves, drought, extreme climate and weather events, floods and wildfires.
The transportation sector is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, making up 27% of all emissions. Tailpipe exhaust from heavy-duty vehicles is a significant source of nitrogen oxides (NOx), which react in the atmosphere to form ground-level ozone. On this matter Albuquerque has been getting an F for several years in a row, continuously exposing my family to this harmful pollution. I am very concerned about how this pollution is affecting my kids’ health and development. Setting the strongest possible greenhouse gas pollution standards for trucks, and rapidly transitioning to zero-emissions trucks that will help reduce other forms of tailpipe pollution, is key for addressing climate justice for communities and families like mine.
The vehicles covered by this rule will be on the road for decades to come. Parents in New Mexico want to see a rapid transition to zero-emissions vehicles, and Moms Clean Air Force is calling on EPA to finalize the strongest possible clean trucks standards this year. Everyone has the right to breathe clean air, our children’s health and future depends on it.
Once again I support the strongest possible greenhouse gas regulations for heavy-duty vehicles, consistent with the Advanced Clean Trucks rule.