Skip to Navigation
Skip to Content

Support PSR!

Your membership supports PSR's work to reduce global warming, eliminate toxics in our environment and abolish nuclear weapons. YOU make our work possible. Thank you.

Donate Now »

Take Action

Tell the EPA: don't delay the proposed rule to capture leaking methane gas. Our health and the health of the climate cannot wait!

Earth Day, the White House, and on to action!

Posted by Barbara Gottlieb on April 22, 2010

 

PSR is off to the White House!  We were invited to join President Obama in celebrating the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.  We’re being represented by our board president, Dr. Jeff Patterson.  Pretty neat!

It’s neat because it means that PSR’s health message is recognized as an essential element of environmental concerns – especially in regard to climate.  We consider climate change to be a health crisis that we must prevent, because it is one that we cannot cure.

There are concrete actions we can take to assure that we prevent the worst consequences of global warming.  Here are three that PSR wants encompassed in U.S. climate legislation:

1.  Oppose limits to the EPA’s authority to control greenhouse gases. 

Climate legislation should preserve the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s authority to use the Clean Air Act to reduce global warming pollution.  The Clean Air Act is one of our most valuable tools for protecting Americans from dangerous air pollution.  It has worked effectively for 40 years, saving hundreds of thousands of lives and maintaining a healthier environment. 

Now it's time to use the Clean Air Act to regulate “greenhouse gases.”  The EPA has proposed to reduce greenhouse gas pollution from vehicles and from the largest industrial emitters, like refineries and coal-fired power plants.  These reductions would protect public health, create jobs, and promote innovation for clean renewable energy.  Congress should put no limits on EPA’s ability to take effective action.

2.  Require existing coal-fired power plants to comply with health-based air quality standards, just like proposed new plants. 

If existing coal plants are not required to meet the same standards as new coal plants, existing plants will be able to keep on running, even ramping up carbon dioxide emissions, for decades. At that point, it will be difficult or impossible to achieve the steep emissions cuts necessary to avoid the worst anticipated effects of global warming.  Coal-fired power plants should be required to clean up their dangerous emissions now.

3.  Include a strong federal Renewable Energy Standard (RES) and efficiency standard.

With a strong RES, we could double the number of clean-energy jobs in the U.S. by 2025.   Yet if we don’t have a national standard, many states could actually lose clean energy jobs.
 
Energy efficiency must be increased too.  It’s underutilized, yet highly productive.  Efficient use of energy results in positive economic impacts and a big cut in air pollution.

It starts on Earth Day and continues on Thursday, April 29 in our “Day of Action.” We’ll be telling Congress that strong climate legislation is necessary for health.  To join us in Washington or take action in your community, sign up here.

Comments

Leave your comment

Name
Comment
Enter this word: Change

Action Alerts

  • Tell the EPA: Don't delay methane protections

    Tell the EPA: don't delay the proposed rule to capture leaking methane gas. Our health and the health of the climate cannot wait!

  • Tell Congress—defend the Clean Air Act against Big Oil!

    President Trump, his new EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, and some in Congress are attempting to block or weaken clean air and climate protections like the Clean Power Plan. Tell your member of Congress to support full implementation of the Clean Air Act and the Clean Power Plan.

More action alerts»

Resources

  • Video: Fracking - Too Dirty, Too Dangerous

    Former executive director of Physicians for Social Responsibility, Catherine Thomasson, MD, presents findings from PSR's report "Too Dirty, Too Dangerous: Why Health Professionals Reject Natural Gas". It is based on summaries of recent medical and scientific studies which clearly convey the health threats that accompany use of methane as a fuel. Read more »

  • Webinar: The Fight for Solar

    Solar energy is one of our best hopes for a clean energy future – yet some utility companies are trying to stifle the spread of rooftop solar. Learn more about the fight for rooftop ("distributed") solar. Read more »

  • Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) Fact Sheet

    RGGI has significantly reduced air pollution from fossil fuel power plants, improving the health of people living in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic regions. 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.