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Air pollution harming PA wildlife


April 21, 2011

STATE COLLEGE, PA — A new report from National Wildlife Federation (NWF) finds that a number of wildlife species important to hunters and anglers in Pennsylvania are harmed by toxic air pollution and climate change. The report comes at the same time the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is announcing long-awaited proposed rules to limit mercury, sulfur dioxide and other toxic emissions from power plants.

Mercury is one of the most common and toxic power plant emissions in Pennsylvania and causes a variety of health disorders for fish, mammals, birds and other species.
Brook trout is named in the report for being in harm’s way due to a “double whammy” of toxic air pollution and a warming climate. Among the invisible villains to wildlife in Pennsylvania are mercury, carbon pollution, acid rain and increased ground level ozone. The NWF report, “Game Changers: Air pollution, a warming climate, and the troubled future for America’s hunting and fishing heritage,” is available by contacting Ed Perry at paglobalwarming@gmail.com.

The National Wildlife Federation and Trout Unlimited are calling for members of Congress to support the updating of air pollution limits under the Clean Air Act to rein in the ongoing damage to our nation’s wildlife and natural heritage. The new House of Representatives is currently considering several proposals that would severely weaken the Clean Air Act by preventing EPA from updating air pollution standards.

Earlier this month, the House passed a “continuing resolution” budget bill that included riders that would kill the EPA’s first standards to reduce carbon pollution and eliminate new standards limiting mercury and air toxics from some sources.