Major Stake for Granite State in EPA Clean Power Plan Hearings
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
CONCORD, N.H. - The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is holding hearings this week on the proposed Clean Power Plan, which aims to reduce carbon emissions from power plants by 30 percent from 2005 levels.
Supporters of the new regulations say they could save thousands of lives each year. Sharon Shumack, director of education and programs with the New England chapter of the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, says cleaner air would benefit residents in the Granite State and throughout the region.
"The New England states actually have among the highest rates of asthma anywhere in the United States," says Shumack. "So cleaner air policy would improve asthma outcomes and keep children and adults with asthma healthier."
Opponents of the regulations say they could be devastating for business, but supporters say clean air regulations have already have produced at least $1 trillion in savings for the economy. Schumack says cleaner air would benefit the one in 10 residents of New England who cope with asthma.
Former EPA administrator Carol Browner says the purpose of this week's hearings is to engage the public and decision makers in an effort to learn the best ways to reduce carbon pollution and its related hazards.
"What are the tools we can use? Energy efficiency, renewables, and clean energy," says Browner. "So the good news is the EPA wants to hear from people about how to best go ahead and actually do the work of reducing dangerous pollution."
The EPA says it has already received more than 300,000 public comments on the proposal. The EPA will hold hearings Tuesday and Wednesday in Atlanta, along with hearings in Denver and Washington D.C. The closest hearings to New Hampshire will be held in Pittsburgh this Thursday and Friday.
Comments can also be submitted via the EPA website through October 16th.
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