Today’s major announcement from the EPA to cut mercury and other toxic air pollution from hundreds of coal-fired power plants across the country was welcome news here at Earthjustice. For nearly 15 years, we’ve been fighting in the courts for cuts like these so that our communities and our children can breathe a little easier.
Turns out we’re not alone in celebrating. Major power providers Calpine Corporation, Constellation Energy, Exelon Corporation, PG&E Corporation, Public Service Enterprise Group, Inc., and Seattle City Light praised the EPA for it’s decision to regulate toxic pollutants like mercury, lead and arsenic.
“We support the EPA’s efforts to finalize the rule in order to reap the significant public health benefits as indicated by the Agency’s analysis,” the companies wrote in their joint statement. “There ought to be no further delay.”
Some of these same companies chided the Wall Street Journal in a letter to the editor last December for mischaracterizing the EPA’s air quality regulations. Seeing sectors of the utility industry start to support some of these important and mandatory regulations signals that the benefits of the Clean Air Act far outweigh the costs.
While we’re certain to hear some griping from other utility companies about the cost of compliance or the deadline the EPA is imposing for compliance with today’s proposal, it’s nice to see that some companies understand the benefits of clean air and a healthy environment. And besides, as the companies wrote in their statement, “The industry has had more than enough time to study and prepare for these requirements.”