BLUE RIDGE ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE LEAGUE
JANUARY 17, 2002
BREDL TAKES AIM AT CLEAN AIR ACT ROLLBACKS
Today the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League sent a letter to EPA Region III Administrator Welsh outlining our recommendations and stating our opposition to the Bush Administrations proposed changes in the federal Clean Air Act. BREDL is organizing to respond to these proposals. Indeed, some of the changes which may be announced soon by the US Environmental Protection Agency would be final, not subject to state and public review. BREDL is convinced that, if implemented, the changes in New Source Review would gut the Clean Air Act and increase air pollution dramatically.
BREDL staff and volunteers are educating our local chapters and other community groups, identifying specific facilities and communities which would be affected by the rollbacks, and writing letters to government officials.
Most large air pollution sources in Virginia would be allowed under the cutbacks to release more particulate matter, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide, and lead. The categories of VA facilities that would be affected include furniture plants, coal-fired electric plants, chemical plants, petrochemical plants, and many others.
BREDL has learned that the administration may announce support for a three pollutant reduction program for coal-fired power plants. Such a program even if it were to become law would not begin to offset the enormous harm which changes in NSR could mean for regional air quality.