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Executive order would gut clean air, climate protections
Washington, D.C., March 28, 2017 — The American Public Health Association strongly opposes the new executive order signed today by President Donald Trump directing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to abandon the Clean Power Plan, action that would significantly weaken vital environmental protections.
"The Clean Power Plan is instrumental in strengthening our ability to address climate change and protect clean air,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, executive director of APHA. “Any attempt to diminish these protections threatens the health of all Americans."
The Clean Power Plan aims to reduce carbon pollution from power plants by 32 percent by 2030. Power plants are the leading contributor to climate change and are responsible for the largest source of carbon emissions in the U.S. The plan will also reduce other harmful pollutants that contribute to soot and smog by more than 25 percent. These reductions will provide important health protections to the most vulnerable, including children and seniors, saving lives and billions of dollars.
"The Clean Power Plan puts us on a path to ensuring clean air and reducing the threat of climate change,” said Benjamin. “Science has proven that climate change is already affecting human health. We cannot afford to roll back protections that help mitigate its dangerous effects."
APHA has designated 2017 as the Year of Climate Change and Health, a yearlong initiative to raise awareness and mobilize action around the health impacts of climate change. Learn more at https://www.apha.org/climate.
APHA champions the health of all people and all communities. We strengthen the public health profession. We speak out for public health issues and policies backed by science. We are the only organization that combines a 140-plus year perspective, a broad-based member community and the ability to influence federal policy to improve the public’s health. Visit us at www.apha.org.