TELL THE EPA: Latines need stronger air quality standards for Soot NOW!
On January 6th, EPA released their proposal to strengthen air quality standards for fine particulate matter. After nearly a year of regulatory delay, the proposal fell short of the health protection needed for Latine communities. We deserve better from the EPA than a weak standard that lets industrial polluters off the hook at the expense of nuestras comunidades. The EPA needs to consider and finalize the strongest possible standards of 8 ug/m3 (annual) and 25 ug/m3 (24-hour), consistent with what its independent outside scientific experts called for.
Sign our petition below to make sure the EPA finalizes the strongest limits on soot pollution as soon as possible.
Dear Administrator Regan,
As a member of GreenLatinos, I urge the EPA to center Latine communities and set the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for fine particulate matter pollution to the strongest possible standards of 8 ug/m3 (annual) and 25 ug/m3 (24-hour), consistent with what the agency’s independent scientific experts have called for.
Latines continue to bear the brunt of air pollution from fossil fuels, dirty trucks, ports, and many more sources of dirty air. People living in majority Latine communities are dangerously exposed to higher soot pollution levels than those living in majority white neighborhoods. This means our community disproportionately experiences soot pollution related illnesses such as impaired lung function, childhood asthma, and cardiovascular diseases. This trend can be seen across the country, in rural and urban settings, and at all income levels.
Particulate matter, otherwise known as soot, is a grave threat to human health and we need the EPA to recognize that anything weaker than the 8 μg/m3 annual and 25 μg/m3 24-hour levels is a death sentence for between 15,000-16,000 people annually, which will undoubtedly be disproportionately Latine lives lost. Weaker standards will also lead to avoidable emergency room visits and hospitalizations, respiratory disease, heart disease, preterm and low birth weight babies. These avoidable health outcomes will also disproportionately hit home for nuestras familias where our children are 1) more likely to have asthma, and 2) those with asthma are almost twice as likely to die from an asthma attack than non-Latine white children.
The EPA’s work to implement and enforce the Clean Air Act has yielded enormous public health benefits and saved countless lives over the years. It’s time for the Agency to continue that work by setting the strongest science-based soot pollution standards to keep the air our familias live and work in safe.