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In reaction to Rep. Bliley's challenge to environmentalists: NRDC welcomes new ally in fight against dirty diesels: Reminds Rep. Bliley that it's been playing this tune for years

WASHINGTON (March 23, 2000) – In reaction to U.S. Rep. Tom Bliley's (R-Va.) challenge to national environmental groups to stand with him to protest the Environmental Protection Agency's failure to set tough diesel emission standards, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) said it was pleased to have a new ally in its decades-long fight.

NRDC's comments came after Rep. Bliley, chair of the House Commerce Committee, released a report detailing what he called EPA's failure to enforce pollution standards for heavy-duty trucks.

NRDC, which is frequently a plaintiff against EPA in lawsuits over the agency's lax attitude toward environmental protection, applauded Rep. Bliley's announcement today.

"Based on Rep. Bliley's comments we conclude that he now agrees with us that soot and smog pollutants from diesel engines present an unacceptable health threat to Americans," said David Hawkins, NRDC senior attorney and one of the organization's resident experts on air pollution issues.

"For years we have published reports and delivered testimony to Congress and the administration making the same points he makes today. We're glad he's on our team, and look forward to working with him—and others who might want to join us—to clean up diesel pollution without further delay," he concluded.

The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, non-profit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has more than 400,000 members nationwide, served from offices in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco. More information is available through NRDC's Web site at www.nrdc.org.

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