Toxic air pollution threatens our health

More than half of all Americans live in places with unsafe levels of air pollution, which causes heart attacks, asthma attacks, emergency room visits, hospital admissions and even deaths every year.

Studies show that one in ten women of childbearing age has enough mercury in her bloodstream to put her child at risk of health effects should she become pregnant. This means that more than 689,000 out of the 4.1 million babies born every year could be exposed to dangerous levels of mercury.

The consequences are serious: Children who are exposed to even low-dosage levels of mercury in the womb can have impaired brain functions, including verbal, attention, motor control and language deficits, and lower IQs.  When these children are monitored at ages 7 and 14, these impairments still exist — suggesting that the damage caused by mercury may be irreversible.

3,781 bodies of water contaminated nationwide

Coal-fired power plants spew hundreds of thousands of pounds of toxic mercury into our air every year, which falls to earth in the form of rain and contaminates rivers, lakes and streams.

And it doesn’t take much mercury to have a big impact on our health.  Scientists found that a single gram of mercury can contaminate an entire 20-acre lake.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, mercury impairs 3,781 bodies of water across the country. More than 6 million acres of lakes, reservoirs, and ponds in the United States are contaminated by mercury pollution.

Here in New York, the threat of mercury contamination led the Department of Health to recommend against eating fish caught in lakes, rivers and streams from the Mohawk River to Lake Ontario.

With your help, we can save 46,000 lives

Recently, the EPA moved ahead with efforts to significantly reduce mercury, soot and smog pollution, announcing historic new emissions standards that could save 46,000 lives a year. Unfortunately, polluters and their allies in Congress launched a coordinated attack to block these critical safeguards.

We’re working closely with our allies in the public health community, lobbying key senators, and rallying thousands of activists to stand up for public health.

It won’t be easy, but if enough of us speak out, we can drown out the coal industry lobbyists and make sure that the EPA is allowed to do its job and protect public health.


Clean Air Updates

News Release | Environment New York Research and Policy

New Report: Electric Cars Are Putting the Brakes on Pollution

More than 220,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are on America’s roads today, delivering real benefits for our health and our environment, according to a new report released today by Environment New York Research and Policy Center. In just the last two years, annual sales of electric vehicles have increased by 500 percent.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment New York

Driving Cleaner

More than 220,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are on America’s roads today, delivering real benefits for our health and our environment. More than 220,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are on America’s roads today, delivering real benefits for our health and our environment. Electric vehicles could prevent more than 1,758,000 million metric tons of climate-changing carbon pollution annually in New York by 2025. That’s the equivalent of saving more than 197,817,000 gallons of gasoline per year, or eliminating tailpipe pollution from 370,000 of today’s cars and trucks.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment New York Research & Policy Center

Moving America Forward

American leadership in the fight against global warming is crucial. America is the world’s largest economy, the second-largest emitter of global warming pollution, and the nation responsible for more of the human-caused carbon dioxide pollution in the atmosphere than any other. Without prompt action by the United States and others to reduce global warming pollution, catastrophic impacts – from coastal flooding to food system disruptions – could become unavoidable. 

> Keep Reading
News Release | Environment New York Research & Policy Center

Clean Energy is Cutting Carbon Pollution in New York

> Keep Reading

Pages

View AllRSS Feed