Take action: Say NO to 2 more years of increased asthma attacks

By Newsroom America Feeds at 1 Dec 2017

Trump's EPA is trying to put a two-year delay on methane standards that protect our communities from dangerous pollution and climate disruption. Take Action: Tell the EPA that they're supposed to protect people, not polluters. http://click.emails.sierraclub.org/?qs=734bc57d01c49d531ce9ba1ff09e029112ca7920cc8d186c6c9f440550967c3ee3912de2ff139d14b7d72c9c5bc045100a59d0366d482c22

Dear Eric,

Trump and Pruitt are lending a hand to their oil and gas industry friends yet again.

Last year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized a set of commonsense standards to help reduce methane pollution from oil and gas equipment and protect communities. Now, Trump's EPA, under polluting Pruitt's lead, is working to halt and delay these protections for two years. That's right, the agency tasked with protecting our environment is actually trying to put a two-year delay on methane standards that protect our communities from dangerous pollution and climate disruption.

http://click.emails.sierraclub.org/?qs=734bc57d01c49d531ce9ba1ff09e029112ca7920cc8d186c6c9f440550967c3ee3912de2ff139d14b7d72c9c5bc045100a59d0366d482c22 This is unacceptable. Tell the EPA that they're supposed to protect our communities, not help the oil and gas industry pollute them.

EPA's pollution standards are crucial to protecting public health. Oil and gas companies release millions of metric tons of climate-disrupting methane into the air every year alongside other dangerous gases and compounds. These other gases react in the atmosphere toproduce smog and soot, which cause serious health problems like shortness of breath, asthma attacks, heart attacks, and even premature death. Oil and gas operations also emit air toxins such as benzene and formaldehyde, known human carcinogens.

Methane pollution from these facilities also poses a grave danger to our planet. It has over 80 times the global warming power of carbon dioxide in the near-term, making it a major driver of climate disruption.According to the most recent estimates, oil and gas equipment emitted approximately 8.1 million metric tons of methane pollution in 2015 -- the same climate impact as driving 150 million cars for a year.

A two-year delay of these critical protections means two more years of increased asthma attacks, two more years of cancerous compound emissions, and two more years of climate-warming gases leaking into our air. http://click.emails.sierraclub.org/?qs=734bc57d01c49d531ce9ba1ff09e029112ca7920cc8d186c6c9f440550967c3ee3912de2ff139d14b7d72c9c5bc045100a59d0366d482c22 Our communities shouldn't have to take that risk so Trump and Pruitt can help their oil and gas industry buddies. Submit your public comment to the EPA before the December 8 deadline.

To justify its decision to delay these pollution protections in favor of helping big polluters, the Trump administration is throwing basic science and economics out the window.When a government agency, like the EPA, regulates methane pollution, it's supposed to take into account what's known as the social cost of methane. It's a complex model, backed by years of scientific research and economic calculations, that helps account for the economic costs associated with methane pollution -- from public health costs to the damages caused by extreme weather events that are made more severe and more frequent by climate change. Scott Pruitt sued the EPA over these very same pollution standards as Attorney General of Oklahoma, and as the head of the agency, is now trying to fudge the numbers by arguing that they should only consider the effects of methane within U.S. borders.

Not only is this a huge change, it quite simply doesn't make any sense. Climate change doesn't have borders. When greenhouse gases like methane are released, they don't just stay over the U.S., but mix evenly in the atmosphere to warm the entire planet. That's a matter of basic science, and Pruitt can't just pretend otherwisein this rule-making. Worse still, Pruitt and company are manipulating the social cost of methane even further: They have added a new adjustment to the numbers that severely discounts the needs of future generations in favor of the financial interests of today's investors.

These changes have a huge impact, too. Under the previous model, the social cost of methane for 2020 was set at $1,400 per metric ton, while Pruitt's EPA now says it's only $55! That's a tremendous difference, and they're using this manipulated figure to claim that delaying this rule will save money and downplay the serious costs that methane pollution has for our planet and our communities. But make no mistake: The only people benefiting from a freeze on EPA methane standards are corporate polluters and their allies. The head of the EPA is supposed to represent the best interests of the American people -- not the worst actors in the oil and gas industry.

http://click.emails.sierraclub.org/?qs=734bc57d01c49d531ce9ba1ff09e029112ca7920cc8d186c6c9f440550967c3ee3912de2ff139d14b7d72c9c5bc045100a59d0366d482c22 Take action: Tell polluting Pruitt his blatant decision to put the interests of polluters ahead of the health of the American people is unacceptable.

Thanks for protecting our climate and communities,

Matthew Gravatt Associate Legislative Director Sierra Club


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