Thursday, May 19, 2005

PA takes lead on mercury emissions?

In light of the Bush Administration's relative disinterest in environmental issues, local governments are starting to take matters into their own hands. Last week it was a nationwide group of mayors agreeing to enforce Kyoto Accord standards (for greenhouse gasses) on their own cities, and today the state of Pennsylvania announced its intentions to enforce tighter regulations on mercury than those proposed by the federal government (which have been widely denounced).
Calling the Bush administration's approach "inadequate and illegal," Gov. Rendell's environmental regulators said yesterday Pennsylvania would issue its own restrictions on mercury emissions from coal-burning power plants - the first big coal state to do so.
Details of the plan are expected by late summer. Apparently this action was spurred by pressure from a coalition of environmental, labor, health, and sporting groups, who filed a petition asking for better standards in the state. There's likely to be resistance from power companies, with arguments about competitive disadvantages of increased regulation. Stay tuned.

PA has also joined with NJ and several other states in suing the federal government for providing inadequate protection of the public health through its new mercury standards (announced in March). I have to say, when they're warning you not to eat the fish, it's perhaps time to take some further action . . .


Post a Comment

<< Home