HomeWashington Letter2017 ▶ ATS Testifies on Clean Air
ATS Testifies on Clean Air

March 2017

This week, ATS Past President Homer Boushey, MD, testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee/Energy and Environment Subcommittee in opposition to legislation (H.R. 806) that would rewrite the Clean Air Act to:

  • Delay implementation of the EPA ozone standard
  • Require EPA to update air pollution standards every 10 years (as opposed to every five years under current law)
  • Require EPA to consider "technical feasibility" in setting air quality standards (under current law the standard must be set to protect public health, irrespective of costs.  Costs are considered in how states meet air standards).

In his testimony, Dr. Boushey noted that, "the health impacts of delaying air pollution standards are not trivial.  In the 10-year review lag called for in this bill, a child will grow from a newborn to a 10-year old.  In that time, the lungs, like the rest of the body, will see tremendous changes that will determine the life-long health prospects of that child.  We know childhood exposure to air pollution adversely shapes the development of the lungs in ways that predispose to adult disease.  By delaying improvements in air quality, we are literally burdening our children with life-long health issues."

The legislation is expected to be considered and passed by the House of Representatives in the near future.  It is less clear if the legislation has enough support to be considered by the Senate.

Last Reviewed: October 2017