Press Releases

Sen. Carper Commends American Lung Association Study

Carper Offers Support to New Air Quality Report by the American Lung Association

May 02 2007

Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) today commended the important work of the American Lung Association (ALA) to monitor the quality of the air Americans breathe.

In its new report, State of the Air: 2007, the ALA evaluates the air quality of cities and counties across the United States. The study found that while smog levels decreased nationwide, particle pollution levels increased in certain areas putting some 93.7 million Americans at risk.

"The work of the American Lung Association to track the condition of the air we breathe is essential for calling attention to this environmental epidemic and finding a solution," said Sen. Carper.

Last month, Sen. Carper introduced the Clean Air Planning Act of 2007 (CAPA) that requires power plants to significantly reduce output of sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and mercury emissions, and implements a cap-and-trade program to reduce CO2 emissions.

Sen. Carper's CAPA bill would help address problems highlighted in the ALA study, specifically it would: • Cut sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions by 82 percent by 2015.
• Cut emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) by 68 percent by 2015.
• Cut mercury emissions at each power plant by 90 percent in 2015.
• Implement a cap-and-trade program to reduce CO2 emissions. CO2 emissions would be capped at today's levels in 2012 and 2001 levels in 2015.

CAPA also would attend to the nation's energy shortage and rising energy prices by offering incentives for new clean-coal technologies and cleaner power plants to enter the marketplace. A new generation of clean-coal power plants could reduce U.S. dependence on foreign fuel sources and help clean up the environment.

ALA issued a statement of support to Sen. Carper regarding CAPA, which included: "We thank Senator Carper for introducing this bill to strengthen the Clean Air Act by reducing emissions from individual power plants that contribute to local air pollution problems. This legislation would result in broad regional reductions in particle pollution and smog."

"It will take all of us working together to improve air quality and reverse global warming. CAPA and the work of the ALA are two pieces in the larger puzzle to find local solutions to a global problem," said Sen. Carper.

On May 16th Sen. Carper, as chairman of the Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Subcommittee, will conduct a hearing on mercury pollution, the first of several hearings directed at the nation's air quality problem. This hearing will help chart the course for improving the air quality in America and curbing the climate crisis.