STATE – Several prominent Democrats are urging Gov. Chris Christie to support efforts by the federal Environmental Protection Agency to fight air pollution from other states that ends up in New Jersey.
Yesterday, Christie was critical of the EPA but said that he hadn’t decided whether to join other northeast states in their bid to help the federal agency defend its air pollution rule in court.
“I don’t like giving EPA any more power than it has already, in general, especially given this administration’s use of power at the EPA, which has been over-reaching and stifling to job growth and business development in this country,” Christie said Thursday.
U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg urged the governor to support the EPA’s defense of the Cross-State Air Pollution rule.
“We are fighting in Washington to keep pollution from other states from hurting New Jersey families, but it undercuts our efforts when our Governor says he doesn’t know whose side he is on,” Lautenberg said. “Governor Christie has a simple choice: protect New Jersey or protect the out-of-state polluters who are degrading our air and threatening our health. Governor Christie must break from the Tea Party effort to gut the Environmental Protection Agency and do what is best for the health of our children and families.”
State Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono also urged Christie to support the EPA rule. “Federal officials are now taking responsible action to require dirty plants in states with less stringent standards to clean up,” she said. “Joining this effort should be a no-brainer. It would better protect the health of millions of people living in New Jersey, and prevent respiratory illnesses and death caused by these harmful toxins.”
The Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) requires 27 states – including New Jersey – to significantly reduce power plant emissions that contribute to smog or soot pollution in other states. This rule would help protect Americans in downwind states from the health and economic costs caused by pollution emitted in other states.