New Letter from Public Interest Groups Supports Protective EPA Particulate Pollution Limits for New Cars
(Washington, D.C. – November 15, 2023) Twenty-nine public interest groups sent a letter to President Biden today expressing strong support for protective limits on particulate matter pollution in EPA’s pending standards for cars and passenger trucks.
“Finalizing strong [particulate matter] standards that drive the deployment of off the shelf, low-cost gasoline particulate filters will save lives and reduce asthma attacks and cancer risk, all while saving our nation billions of dollars in avoided healthcare costs,” the groups say in their letter.
EPA’s proposed Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards for Model Year 2027 and Later Light-Duty and Medium-Duty Vehicles includes a proposed particulate matter limit of 0.5 milligrams per mile. Particulate matter is linked to heart and lung diseases, including heart attacks, asthma attacks, and premature deaths. Children, older people, and people with pre-existing heart or lung problems are especially at risk from it. Strong standards for new passenger vehicles would help protect vulnerable communities near roadways, which are predominantly communities of color and are exposed to higher rates of health-harming pollution.
Manufacturers could meet a stronger particulate matter pollution limit by installing Gasoline Particulate Filters on new vehicles – a widely available and inexpensive technology that is already being used in Europe and Asia and by some auto manufacturers in the U.S. Gasoline Particulate Filters cost as little as $51 and can reduce a car’s particulate matter pollution by more than 97%.
One new report found that adding Gasoline Particulate Filters to new gas-powered cars and passenger trucks would double the health benefits already expected from an increase in electric vehicles. The same study found that standards that increase the use of Gasoline Particulate Filters could save 22,000 lives, prevent hundreds of thousands of asthma attacks, and save the U.S. up to $163 billion in health care costs by 2050.
“We urge the Administration to finalize its Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards, including the strong health-protecting particulate standards, without delay,” the groups say in their letter.
The 29 groups signing on to the letter are AESI, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, CEERT (Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies), Center for Biological Diversity, Clean Air Task Force, Colorado Fiscal Institute, Ecology Center, EcoMadres, Electric Vehicle Association, Environmental Defense Fund, Environmental Law & Policy Center, Environmental Protection Network, Evergreen Action, EVHybridNoire, GreenLatinos, Interfaith Power & Light, League of Conservation Voters (LCV), MI Air MI Health, Michigan Environmental Council, Michigan League of Conservation Voters, Moms Clean Air Force, Natural Resources Defense Council, Plug In America, Public Citizen, Respiratory Health Association, Sierra Club, The Revolving Door Project, Union of Concerned Scientists, and WE ACT for Environmental Justice.
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