It’s puzzling why the CDT would extol Rep. Glenn Thompson’s virtue for being part of the “Problem Solvers” in Congress, because when you look at his record, he’s been on the wrong side of the most pressing issues.
For example, in a column last fall, Thompson called the Environmental Protection Agency’s plan to clean up the fossil-fuel industry an attack on consumers.
Our past reliance on coal has caused every state in the country to issue fish consumption advisories for mercury, a potent neurotoxin. Pennsylvania has extra precautions on 82 streams and lakes, recommending women of child-bearing age restrict fish consumption to only one meal per month.
Burning coal puts huge amounts of soot into the air, exacerbating asthma problems for our kids, and the EPA’s effort to get us off these dirty fossil fuels has met with opposition from Thompson.
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He talks about the jobs that will be lost at coal plants that are out of date and among the most polluting in the country. But he doesn’t talk much about the lives that have been shortened, the lost work days, the asthma attacks, the trips to the hospital and all the other health problems associated with burning coal.
The EPA estimates that the new regulations on coal plants will generate almost $140 billion in benefits by 2017. So you have to wonder how that will hurt consumers.
We’ll all breathe easier when we get off fossil fuels, even though our congressman doesn’t support that.