HomeWashington Letter2018 ▶ ATS Members Speak in Opposition to EPA Proposed Rule to Weaken GHG Emissions
ATS Members Speak in Opposition to EPA Proposed Rule to Weaken GHG Emissions

This week, ATS members Ajanta Patel, MD, and Dustin Fraidenburg, MD, spoke at a Chicago EPA field hearing in opposition to the EPA proposed rule to weaken greenhouse gas emissions regulations on coal and oil-fired power plants.  EPA has issued a proposal that, if implemented, will reduce total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions from power plants by 1.5 percent by 2030 under the best-case scenario.  This contrasts to the earlier policy EPA had adopted, then retracted, that would have reduced greenhouse gas emissions from power plants by 19 percent. The proposed plan, if implemented, would allow many coal-fired power plants to emit even more air pollution annually without having to install pollution control equipment. 

If implemented, the proposed rule will have an adverse impact on respiratory health.  In her comments, Dr. Patel pointed out that, “according to EPA’s own estimates, the proposed plan would also lead to an increase in project air pollution emissions – like particulate matter pollution – that in turn will result in an estimated 1,400 premature deaths annually, 48,000 additional asthma attacks, and 21,000 missed school days.  To me, these aren’t just faceless numeric predictions.  These are kids with lung diseases that I treat.  These are my patients and this proposed rule will put them in jeopardy.”

Dr. Fraidenburg noted, “this rule delays real action by three years, will result in increased morbidity and mortality from more air pollution, and removes pollution controls on the dirtiest power plants - all in exchange for a 1.5 percent reduction in GHG emissions by 2030 and a 0.5 percent reduction in electric power bills?  I suggest EPA can do better…”

The ATS will submit detailed written comments expressing our concerns with the proposed rule. Public comment on the proposed rule closes Oct. 30, 2018.  Public comments can be submitted by click here.

Last Reviewed: Ocotber 5, 2018