Sen. Carper Applauds EPA Proposal to Reduce Deadly Air Toxins and Protect Clean Air

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Clean Air, released the following statement applauding the Environment Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposal to reduce hazardous air pollutants from uncontrolled coal and oil-fired power plants:

“Dirty coal and oil-fired power utilities spew more hazardous air pollution into our air than any other industrial source.  This is air pollution we know can negatively impact our children’s brain development, can cause cancer, and can even cause death.  Today’s proposal is a long overdue measure to start cleaning our air of deadly toxins such as mercury, arsenic, benzene, and dioxin.

“To comply with state regulations, many utilities, like the ones in Delaware, have already made investments in clean air technology that will meet these new EPA requirements.  Unfortunately, over half of our coal plants still do not utilize the best clean air technology, which leaves millions of Americans at risk to the harmful effects of deadly coal air pollution.  It doesn’t have to be this way.  We have the technology to clean up these plants so they do not jeopardize the health of millions of Americans.  

“Making these clean air investments could be a win-win-win as we save thousands of lives, millions of dollars in health care costs, and we create good paying jobs here at home by manufacturing this clean air technology in the United States. Clean air regulations like today’s proposal will help American companies size this opportunity to modernize their plants and ensure that all of our children have a healthy future. 

“For forty years, the economic, health, and environmental benefits America has realized because of the Clean Air Act have far outweighed the costs of the initial investment.  In fact, for every dollar we spend to comply with the Clean Air Act, we get thirty dollars in return in public health and economic gains. At the same time, we can create much needed jobs every year.  That strikes me as a great return on our investment.”