On March 18, Air Alliance Houston Director Dr. Bakeyah Nelson delivered a testimony at the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) public hearing about the implications of the agency’s recent proposal to undermine the Mercury and Air Toxics Rule (MATS).

The MATS rule, established in 2011, is a vital clean air rule that places national limits on mercury and other hazardous air pollutants emitted from coal-fired power plants. Since the rule’s establishment, mercury pollution from power plants has dropped by more than 80 percent.

In her testimony, Dr. Nelson underlined that the MATS rule is currently saving thousands of lives every year. She also reminded that harm from power plants’ pollution did not and does not fall evenly on all people. By taking steps to undo the MATS rule now would be a direct affront to environmental justice communities.

Dr. Nelson was joined by a large number of other environmental and public health advocates at the hearing, including representatives from Moms Clean Air Force, Sierra Club, Environmental Defense Fund, and American Lung Association, who gave powerful testimonies in support of the rule.  

Dr. Nelson’s full testimony as delivered is available here.

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