For Immediate Release: June 25, 2012
BREAKING: Minnesotans celebrate record-breaking support for curbing carbon pollution
ST. PAUL – Minnesotans joined together on Monday to highlight the broad public support for the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed carbon pollution standard—a proposed standard to limit industrial carbon pollution from new power plants. This first-ever limit is essential to improve public health and protect Minnesota kids. Over 2.1 million Americans have submitted written comments to the EPA, saying the EPA is doing its job under the Clean Air Act to protect the health and safety of Americans by holding power plants accountable for the amount of carbon pollution they spew into the air. Minnesotans have submitted at least 36,000 comments in support of the EPA rule. The EPA comment period ends at midnight on Monday, June 25, with comments rolling into the EPA from around the nation.
Groups whose members around Minnesota and the nation have commented in support of the EPA carbon standard spoke at today’s celebration in St. Paul. Speakers included Councilman Russ Stark, who represents Ward 4 in St. Paul, Katie Gulley, Regional Program Manager at the BlueGreen Alliance, Reverend Gwin Pratt, Pastor at St. Luke’s Presbyterian Church, Minnetonka, and a leader with Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light, Kate Faye, MN350 coordinator, Joshua Low of the Sierra Club, and J. Drake Hamilton, Science Policy Director at Fresh Energy.
“St. Paul residents are concerned about the air that they breathe, “said St. Paul City Councilman Russ Stark, Ward 4. “That is why the new stronger carbon rule that EPA is considering is of major importance to the people of St. Paul, Minnesota, and the country,” he added. “We can all be proud of the over 2 million people that contacted the EPA to express support for clean air.”
Fresh Energy’s science policy director, J. Drake Hamilton, noted that “More than 20 polls conducted across the country demonstrate that Americans want politicians to protect the public health safeguards in the Clean Air Act, and make sure that companies that pollute the air and water are held accountable for the harm they cause.” Hamilton continued, “The most recent poll conducted on this issue, by Princeton Survey Research Associates for United Technologies/National Journal, found that 55 percent of the public, including 59 percent of independents, say that EPA should be able to control greenhouse gas emissions that most scientists agree cause climate change.”
“We want to protect the health of our families and ensure there are good jobs for ourselves and our neighbors,” said Katie Gulley, Regional Program Manager for Minnesota from the BlueGreen Alliance “We want to keep our economy strong and competitive internationally, and we want our children and their children to have the promising and healthy future they deserve. The Carbon Pollution Standard helps us achieve this.”