McCollum Statement on EPA Plan to Cut Carbon Pollution
Washington, DC – In response to the proposed Environmental Protection Agency action to reduce carbon emissions, Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN) released the following statement:
“Climate change is a clear and present threat to our natural environment. Over the past several years, we have seen an increase in super storms, an uptick in tornadoes, and rapidly melting ice in the arctic. Severe weather events are becoming more frequent and they are affecting more Americans. These consequences of carbon pollution and the resulting climate change are easy to see and feel, and their impacts are often devastating.
“Carbon pollution has another consequence that is less readily apparent, but still poses a great threat to our nation – the catastrophic effect that poor air quality can have on our nation’s public health. Carbon pollution is tied to higher rates of asthma and an increased risk of heart attack. Air that is highly polluted can worsen the effects of many pre-existing health conditions and put the public at a greater risk. Improving the quality of the air that we breathe is simply good public policy for the current health of our nation and the future of our planet. I join public health advocacy groups like the American Lung Association in applauding the President and his administration for taking this critical step today.
“President Obama’s plan to reduce carbon emissions will not only impact the lives of millions suffering from asthma, and other respiratory illnesses, but it sends an important message to the world that the United States is responding to one of the most damaging causes of climate change.
“The science around climate change is overwhelming and clear – our climate is changing and there are things that we can do to slow that change. However, if my Republican colleagues continue to discount the scientific community, future generations will pay the price. We have a responsibility to our nation and to future generations to take action now. I take that responsibility seriously and I urge my Republican colleagues to do the same.”
Congresswoman Betty McCollum serves on the House Appropriations Committee. She is Democratic Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.