Republican Budget Could Put the Brakes on Public Health Protections

The Continuing Resolution proposed last week by Republicans would undermine EPA programs that have protected the nation’s health for the last 40 years.

The government’s own Office of Management and Budget (OMB) evaluated the job EPA’s been doing (see Laurie Johnson on the analysis). They estimated that EPA’s regulatory work has helped prevent millions of cases of respiratory illnesses each year, along with hundreds of thousands of asthma attacks, even hundreds of thousands of premature deaths annually among Americans.

And as I have said before, carbon pollution (on which there are currently no limits) creates a whole host of health risks: Heat waves lead to increased death and illness; hotter temperatures worsen smog, and carbon dioxide worsens pollen, both of which contribute to respiratory illness; Extreme storms affect health and infrastructure; Insect-borne illnesses can spread more widely; Drinking water can become increasingly contaminated; Water and Food supply security is challenged; and there are large numbers of people around the world (as well as here in the US) who need assistance after each environmental disaster.

We need to continue to find ways to lessen the impacts of global warming for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren. Reducing life-threatening carbon pollution can help prevent illness and premature death.

 Climate change is a matter of health. Isn’t our kids’ health worth protecting?