EPA Rollbacks Will Increase Air Pollution Amid Respiratory Pandemic

"In less than a week, the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced two policy changes that could have far-reaching consequences for the air above Massachusetts.

On March 26, the EPA announced it would temporarily stop enforcing certain environmental monitoring and reporting requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic, retroactive to March 13. On Tuesday, the agency issued a final rule weakening Obama-era fuel economy and emission standards.

'Clearly we'll have more pollution, and that will mean more people with asthma, more people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease,' said Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association. 'It's going to make the health of those populations who are exposed much worse.'"

Barbara Moran reports for WBUR April 2, 2020.


"EPA Defends Plan To Ease Compliance Requirements In Face Of Coronavirus" (Cronkite News)

"EPA Defends Suspension Of Pollution Monitoring In Letter To Congress" (The Hill)

"EPA Sends Letter to All Members of Congress to Correct the Record on the Temporary Enforcement Policy" (EPA Release)

"Climate Strikers Blast EPA Suspension Of Pollution Laws: "How Are We Supposed To Protect Our Lungs?"" (Salon)

"“An Open License to Pollute”: The EPA Has Halted Enforcement Due to COVID-19" (Mother Jones)

"EPA to Ease Pollution Enforcement, Which Could Exacerbate Lung Illnesses" (E&E News)

"Trump’s EPA Halts Environmental Law Enforcement During Coronavirus Pandemic" (Guardian)

"Emissions: Trump's Car Rule Would Cause More Pollution Deaths" (ClimateWire)

Source: WBUR, 04/03/2020