Saturday, March 11, 2006

E-mail on Soot Pollution

Hi Janice,

Soot pollution is the nation's deadliest air pollutant, and affects
communities across California. Over the past few weeks, over 4,000
Environment California activists have asked the EPA to strengthen standards
for soot pollution. Dozens more will testify at the air quality hearings
being held in San Francisco next week.

Now, I hope you will take one more step and write a letter to your
local paper about soot pollution and the Bush administration's efforts to
role back current standards. We need the EPA and the media to pay
attention to this important clean air issue. Please ask your family and
friends to do the same by forwarding this email to them.

To submit a letter and get tips on how to write one, click on this link
or paste it to your web browser:

http://www.environmentcalifornia.org/action/clean-air/lte-soot



Background:

Particle or soot pollution is made up of tiny particles, called "fine"
particles, and slightly larger ones, called "coarse" particles, that
are both dangerous and pervasive. Because of their size, these particles
can bypass the body's natural defenses, such as coughing and sneezing,
and lodge deep within the lungs or even pass into the bloodstream,
causing serious respiratory and cardiovascular problems, such as asthma
attacks, heart attacks, and lung cancer. In fact, particle pollution is
so dangerous that it cuts short the lives of tens of thousands of
Americans each year. Power plants and diesel engines are the largest source
of particle pollution. In some parts of the country, agriculture and
mining contribute to serious local coarse particle problems.

Under the Clean Air Act, the administration must set air quality
standards at levels that protect public health and review these standards
every five years, and update them as needed. For fine particle pollution,
there are two standards: an "annual" standard based on how much fine
particle pollution is safe to breathe on a regular, everyday basis and a
"24-hour" standard based on how much fine particle pollution is safe to
breathe on any one day.

In the last several years, study after study has confirmed the damaging
health effects of particles, even at levels well below the current
annual and 24-hour standards. In 2005, both the administration's
independent science advisors on clean air issues and the EPA's staff scientists
concluded that adverse health effects occur at levels well below the
current fine particle standards. As a result, they recommended that the
administration strengthen the standards to protect public health.

In December, however, the Bush administration rejected these
recommendations and proposed fine particle standards that would largely maintain
the status quo, as requested by electric utility lobbyists and other
special interests. Specifically, the administration rejected lowering
the annual standard and proposed only a token reduction in the daily
standard that will have little impact on public health. It is
unprecedented for an administration to disregard the recommendations of its
independent clean air science advisors.

Air quality standards are the foundation for reducing air pollution
nationwide, so the decision on the fine particle standards is one of the
most important decisions this administration will make on air pollution.
Yet, once again, the Bush administration has chosen to favor polluters
over public health and to put politics above science and the law.

In January, the Bush administration opened a public comment period on
the proposal and over 4,000 Environment California activists have
already commented in favor of stronger soot pollution standards. Dozens more
will testify at air quality hearings in San Francisco next week.

Now, I hope you will take one more step and write a letter to your
local paper about soot pollution and the Bush Administrations efforts to
role back current standards. We need the public and the media to pay
attention to this important clean air issue.

To submit a letter and get tips on how to write one, click on this link
or paste it to your web browser:

http://www.environmentcalifornia.org/action/clean-air/lte-soot



Sincerely,
Dan Jacobson
Environment California Legislative Director
DanJ@environmentcalifornia.org
http://www.EnvironmentCalifornia.org


P.S. Thanks again for your support. Please feel free to share this
e-mail with your family and friends.

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2 comments:

grannyfiddler said...

we have monstrous heavy oil and coalbed methane recovery facilities in the planning stages in our area. the landscape is already pockmarked with gas and oil wells, pumps, pipelines and their compressors, from previous gas and oil exploration and recovery. we have the highest incidence of MS in Canada, possibly in all of North America, and we're up there when you look at the asthma stats too. it seems inconceivable to the 'experts' that there could be any environmental connection.

and we don't even have your incredible climate to make the bitter pill easier to swallow! sometimes i think only crazy people live here.

Janice said...

Hi G.F.,

That sounds really really b-a-d.

Here is what we have here to deal with: We have bad air because we have a lots and lots of people driving on the roads, most work along the coast and drive here because the wages are better there and our houseing is less expensive here. And a lot of factories making pastic and fertilizer and wine and Olives etc. which is puting polution in the air and in the water (what little water we do have).

And here in the San juaquin valley which is shaped like a oval bowl all the polution just pools in here, and when it get to over 100 plus like it does every summer it makes the smog worse. I have mild asthma and some days I just stay inside.

And the beautiful moutains I took pictures of reciently are only a memory in the summer time, because we can't see them because of the all the polution and soot in the air.

People who live here must be too despratly poor to move, or too dumb to see the house they bought is in too hot of an area (and are using too much gas to get here), or just too nuts to know the difference.

We don't move because of my husband's job, and we have family here.

Janice~