FUMO WRITES TO EQB IN SUPPORT OF CLEANER VEHICLE STANDARDS
HARRISBURG, April 10, 2006 Ė State Senator Vincent J. Fumo (D-Philadelphia) sent the attached letter last week to the state Environmental Quality Board, urging the members to approve the Pennsylvania Clean Vehicles Program.
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(On Senate Stationary)
April 7, 2006
Environmental Quality Board
Dear Members of the Environmental Quality Board,
On behalf of my constituents, I am writing to urge the state to move ahead as quickly as possible in implementing the Pennsylvania Clean Vehicles Program and its clean air standards for cars and trucks, which go beyond weaker federal requirements.
The damage done to the air that we breathe from tailpipe exhaust is significant. Last summer ozone was higher than federal air quality standards for 23 days and many of those ozone alert days impacted the district I represent. When citizens have to be warned not to go outdoors because the air isnít safe for them, something must be done. I believe that adopting a stronger clean vehicles program than the federal Environmental Protection Agency is advocating is an important step in cleaning the air and protecting the health of citizens throughout the Commonwealth.
Technology exists today that would allow cars and trucks to run cleaner and significantly reduce our air pollution problem. In turn, this will help the Commonwealth to come into compliance with the health-based standards of the federal Clean Air Act.
By moving as quickly as possible to implement the Pennsylvania Clean Vehicles Program we would be able to significantly reduce our air pollution problem --emissions of smog-forming pollution from cars and trucks would be cut by 10 percent, toxic benzene pollution up to 15 percent and global warming emissions would drop by nearly 25 percent by 2025, as compared to reductions under the weaker federal program being considered.
The savings in gasoline as cleaner cars burn fuel more efficiently will also help make our country more energy independent. The greater fuel efficiency will also more than make up for any additional cost of these cleaner, more efficient cars as consumers spend less each year to buy gasoline.
Again, I urge the state to move forward and implement the Pennsylvania Clean Vehicles Program. It just makes sense to utilize more stringent clean vehicle standards that will provide significantly cleaner air at a reasonable cost.
VINCENT J. FUMO