Carbon pollution threatens our health

Carbon pollution spewing from power plants threatens Pennsylvanians’ health.  Doctors, nurses and scientists warn that it fuels global warming, which triggers poor air quality that makes it harder for children to breathe and contributes to thousands of asthma attacks, heart attacks and other fatal diseases.

Studies show that 836,880 Pennsylvania adults and 228,593 children already suffer from asthma.  Nationwide, smog pollution alone leads to roughly 4,700 premature deaths and 19,000 emergency room visits.  Allowing power plants to continue emitting unlimited amounts of carbon pollution will mean more global warming and dirtier air for Pennsylvanians.

Scientists also warn that global warming is expected to lead to more devastating floods, deadly heat waves and many other threats.

Coal-fired power plants need to be cleaned up

Coal-fired power plants are the largest single source of carbon pollution, yet they currently lack any federal limits on their carbon emissions.  And Pennsylvania’s power plants are a big part of the problem, emitting more carbon pollution than power plants in all but four other states.  

But big utilities like GenOn, which have been allowed for decades to spew unlimited amounts of carbon pollution into our air, all while taking in enormous government subsidies, are sure to fight for more of the same.  They’ll join with the coal companies and spend millions on lobbying advertising to try and get off the hook for cutting carbon pollution from their dirty power plants. 

With your help, we can make history

Enough is enough, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency agrees.  Despite these powerful industry naysayers, the EPA is developing the first-ever carbon pollution standards for new power plants.

Now comes the hard part—getting these standards across the finish line and overcoming the corporate polluters’ opposition.  So we’re working closely with our allies in the public health community, working to rally tens of thousands of activists to stand up for public health and our environment.  

It won’t be easy, but if enough of us speak out, we can drown out the coal industry lobbyists and make sure EPA is allowed to do its job and protect public health.

Clean Air Updates


'Toxic Ten' List Reveals Top Polluters In Allegheny County

The Penn Environment Research and Policy Center named Allegheny County's ten most toxic industrial pollutants on Monday. The list ranks power facilities by how much pollution they produce, emphasizing that even though the air looks clean in the region, it may not be.

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Report | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Toxic Ten

Ten industrial polluters in Allegheny County emitted a total of 1.4 million pounds of toxic pollutants into the air in 2013 – including substances linked to cancer, breathing problems, heart disease and nervous system damage.  More than one in three Allegheny County residents lives within three miles of those 10 facilities.

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News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

New Report: Allegheny County’s “Toxic Ten” Emit 1.4 million pounds of toxics in one year

PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center released a new report today that identifies the ten industrial facilities in Allegheny County releasing the most hazardous toxins into the air.

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News Release | PennEnvironment

PennEnvironment Files Lawsuit Against World's Largest Steel Company Over Illegal Air Pollution

Representatives of the citizen-based non-profit group PennEnvironment initiated a federal lawsuit today against the world’s largest steel company, ArcelorMittal, to address hundreds of ongoing violations of the federal Clean Air Act at the company’s Pittsburgh-area coke plant. 

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News Release | PennEnvironment

PennEnvironment to sue world's largest steel company over illegal pollution

At a news conference held in front of the federal courthouse in downtown Pittsburgh, representatives of the citizen-based non-profit group PennEnvironment announced they’re taking the required steps to trigger a lawsuit against the world’s largest steel company, ArcelorMittal, to address hundreds of ongoing violations of the federal Clean Air Act.

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