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Lung Association Poll: Voters Want Soot Protection

They have spoken! Nearly two-thirds of American voters are demanding stronger protections against one of the most dangerous and pervasive pollutants around: soot.

Today, the American Lung Association released results from a national survey of 942 registered voters, finding that support for these clean air protections is broad and deep, with strong majority backing even after hearing balanced messages on both aisles of the debate.

Now it’s time for the EPA and the White House to listen: on Dec. 14, 2012, the EPA will release final updated standards for PM 2.5 (soot). Earlier this year the EPA proposed updated clean air safeguards that will prevent thousands of premature deaths and take steps toward clearing hazy air in national parks.

The proposal came in response to legal action filed by Earthjustice on behalf of the Lung Association and the National Parks Conservation Association.

The polling specifically finds that 62 percent of voters favor the proposal, compared to 30 percent who oppose it. Nearly 40 percent of voters strongly favor the standards, while only 20 percent express strong opposition.

A survey by ALA found broad and deep support for stronger soot standards.

In a press release, Peter Iwanowicz, American Lung Association Assistant Vice President, said:

This poll affirms that the public is sick of soot and wants EPA to set more protective standards. The public also does not buy the arguments being made by big polluters and their allies in Congress that this is not the right time to update soot standards and that doing so would be bad for the economy. They believe we can have clean air and a robust economy.

Earthjustice’s David Baron said:

This poll shows that Americans strongly support clean air. Now is the time for the EPA to deliver on this charge by adopting stronger limits on deadly soot pollution. Americans need and want safeguards that will keep our lungs healthy and our parks clean.