Contact: Cara Cook, ANHE Climate Change Program Coordinator, cara@enviRN.org, 585-469-2383
For Immediate Release:
(July 18th, 2017) Washington, D.C.– Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed the “Ozone Standards Implementation Act of 2017“, or more appropriately titled the “Smoggy Skies Act”. This bill delays lifesaving standards to reduce ozone pollution and other hazardous air pollutants, and permanently weakens the Clean Air Act as a public health policy. In response to its passage, the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments’ Executive Director, Katie Huffling, RN, MS, CNM issued the following statement:
“The Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments is deeply disappointed the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass the ‘Ozone Standards Implementation Act of 2017’. This bill is an effort to undermine the Clean Air Act and its essential health protections by imposing delays and far-reaching changes to safeguards that function to ensure clean air for all.”
“While the Clean Air Act has dramatically reduced levels of harmful air pollution, millions of American are still breathing unhealthy air at the current national air quality standards. Delaying the review period of hazardous air pollutants and hampering the ability of the EPA to enforce air clean up in the most polluted areas puts Americans at an undue risk of harm. Exposure to hazardous pollutants, such as ozone and particulate matter, contribute to increased rates of asthma attacks in children and worsening of respiratory and cardiac conditions, all of which lead to increased healthcare costs and have serious consequences for the economy and society.”
“The progress we have made as a result of the Clean Air Act should not stop. As nurses, we need to hold members of Congress accountable and speak out in opposition to this bill. The Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments is now calling on the Senate to oppose this bill. We need Congress to put the health of our most vulnerable citizens—children, the elderly, and those with chronic health conditions, and all Americans first and not rescind regulations that keep Americans safe.”
The Mission of the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments: Promoting healthy people and healthy environments by educating and leading the nursing profession, advancing research, incorporating evidence-based practice, and influencing policy.