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Health Voices for Clean Air Resources

Why clean air? According to EPA estimates, air pollution claims the lives of 50,000 people each year. The healthcare-related costs from exposure to air pollution are estimated at $40 billion annually. Air pollution from coal-fired power plants alone contributes to four of the five leading causes of death, heart disease, stroke, cancer, and chronic lower respiratory disease in the United States.   Other major sources of air pollution are factories, cement kilns, industrial boilers, and diesel hauling trucks.

Health Voices for Clean Air Resources

The Clean Air Act A Proven Tool for Healthy Air by Kristen Welker-Hood, ScD MSN, Barbara Gottlieb, and John Suttles, JD LLM, with Molly Rauch, MPH.

Coal’s Assault on Health by Alan H. Lockwood, MD FAAN, Kristen Welker-Hood, ScD MSN RN, Molly Rauch, MPH and Barbara Gottlieb.

PSR’s April 2011 Environmental Health Policy Institute, focusing on air pollution’s threats to health.

PSR’s comments to EPA on the proposed standards for particulate matter, submitted on August 13, 2012.

A slide presentation from Dr. Alan Lockwood's fall 2012 Clean Air Speaking tour. State specific slides for Virginia are here.

Health Voices for Clean Air Speakers

Alan Lockwood, MD FAAN, is a neurologist and a board member of Physicians for Social Responsibility.  An emeritus professor at the University at Buffalo, he has focused his recent work on the impacts of the coal fuel cycle on human health. Dr. Lockwood is the author of a new book to be released in September, The Silent Epidemic: Coal and the Hidden Threat to Health, published by MIT Press. He is a leading voice calling for public policies that protect and assure public health.  

Catherine Thomasson, MD is the Executive Director of Physicians for Social Responsibility.  Previously she taught climate change and public health at Portland State University and served on local and state-wide commissions, including Portland’s Climate Change City Plan, to find solutions to climate change.  A strong advocate for public health issues, she guided the PSR Oregon chapter and was active in the campaign to close Oregon’s only coal-burning power plant.

Action Alerts

More action alerts»


  • Health Impacts of Natural Gas Infrastructure

    Fracked natural gas contaminates air and water where it is extracted, then pipelines transport gas-related pollutants for hundreds of miles. Distant communities may be exposed to toxic air pollutants, dangerous particulates, and radioactive materials. All of us are endangered as methane leaks into the atmosphere. Read more »

  • Natural Gas: Not a healthy or climate-protective solution for the Clean Power Plan

    Building natural gas plants to replace coal-fired power is not a solution to the climate crisis; it merely replaces one fossil fuel with another. Read more »

  • Death by Degrees

    The sign of Global Warming are already here. “Death by Degrees” is a series of reports looking at the damaging health effects of global warming by states or regions within the United States. We encourage you to learn about the public health threats global warming poses in your state/ region and contact your elected officials to support climate policies that reduce our reliance on dirty fossil fuels and supports energy efficiency, conservation and clean renewable energy production. Read more »

In the Spotlight

  • November 30, 2016
    Eating for Climate and Health
    PSR's new PowerPoint presentation on how climate change impacts food production, and agriculture's contribution to climate change.