East Coasters Aim to Force Midwesterners to Clean Up Their Air

Concerned that a controversial "good neighbor rule" doesn't go far enough in keeping dirty air from wafting over the East Coast, governors of eight states are petitioning the EPA to enforce stricter pollution standards on their Midwestern neighbors.
December 9, 2013, 12pm PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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After two decades of trying to rein in air pollution, the governors of eight East Coast states claim there's nothing more they can do to improve their excessively harmful air. As a result, they're asking the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help address the source of the problem. 

"Their governors have long criticized the Appalachian and Rust Belt states, including Ohio, Kentucky and Michigan, for their more lenient rules on pollution from coal-fired power plants, factories and tailpipes — allowing those economies to profit from cheap energy while their belched soot and smog are carried on the prevailing winds that blow across the United States," reports Coral Davenport.

"[Gov. Dannel P.] Malloy said that more than half the pollution in Connecticut was from outside the state and that it was lowering the life expectancy of Connecticut residents with heart disease or asthma. 'They’re getting away with murder,' Mr. Malloy said of the Rust Belt and Appalachia. 'Only it’s in our state, not theirs.'”

UPDATE (12/10/13): In addition to the petition to the EPA, the "good neighbor provision", i.e. cross-state pollution, comes before the Supreme Court today. The Court of Appeals had struck down the rule in August as we noted here.

"At issue in Tuesday's Supreme Court case is the EPA's rule requiring as many as 28 upwind states, mostly in the Midwest and South, to slash ozone and fine particle emissions for the benefit of their Middle Atlantic and Northeast neighbors," writes Richard Wolf in USA Today.

Full Story:
Published on Monday, December 9, 2013 in The New York Times
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