Clean Air Act vote next week

The PHCA was recently contacted by Clean Water Action Pittsburgh and asked to join other community groups in signing a letter in support of the Clean Air Act.  We took that letter to the PHCA board of directors, and they voted to support it.

Here, from Clean Water Action Pittsburgh’s site, is the basic info:

“More toxic chemicals are released in Allegheny County than in Beaver, Butler, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties combined! These chemicals jeopardize our environment and threaten our health. In the last few months, Pittsburgh has gotten failing grades for the quality of its air in five separate reports. The American Lung Association, the Environmental Protection Agency, USA Today, Carnegie Mellon University and an investigative report on WTAE all described serious problems with the air we breathe. Cities like Houston, Louisville, and Los Angeles have taken bold action to clean up the air – we need to do the same.

Clean Water Action and residents of the Mon Valley and Neville Island area have been working for three years to get the Air Toxic Guidelines (ATG) updated and strengthened. The Allegheny County Health Department uses this document to help them control future sources of pollution.

The current version was established in 1988, making it now over 20 years old. The Air Toxic Subcommittee which is comprised of representatives from industry, the environmental community, and the Air Quality Program, crafted and unanimously approved an updated version earlier this year. Despite the subcommittee’s approval, the testimony of 15 residents, and resolutions from 6 municipalities the Board of Health voted the new version down at their July 2009 meeting.”

City Council will vote on the Clean Air Act on Wednesday, July 6.  If you live in the City of Pittsburgh and want the Clean Air Act to pass, consider calling your councilperson to express your support for this legislation.