Report | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Accelerating the Transition to Electric School Buses

THE VAST MAJORITY of school buses in the United States run on diesel, a fossil fuel that has been shown to cause numerous health problems, including asthma, bronchitis, and cancer. Diesel exhaust is also a greenhouse gas, which contributes to climate change. However, there is an alternative: zero-emission battery electric school buses.

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Allegheny Co. residents overwhelmingly support stronger clean air protections

PITTSBURGH -- The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) held a virtual public hearing Wednesday night on proposed revisions to the County’s Coke Oven Regulations, which are the key environmental protections governing U.S. Steel’s Clairton Coke Works. More than 50 local residents, including more than 25 PennEnvironment volunteers, testified in support of the County’s proposal to improve inspection practices and clarify limits for sulfur pollution, a respiratory irritant. Residents also urged for even stronger emissions reductions. 

News Release | PennEnvironment

Environmental Groups File Federal Lawsuit Over Air Pollution from Industrial Flares

Washington, D.C. – A coalition of ten environmental organizations today sued the Trump Administration’s EPA over its failure to reduce toxic air pollution from industrial flares at petrochemical plants, gas processing facilities, municipal solid waste landfills, and other large industrial sites.

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

PennEnvironment statement on county controller’s audit of ACHD’s Air Program: Progress has been made, but continued effort needed

PITTSBURGH -- Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner released a new audit Tuesday of the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) Air Quality program. The report found encouraging progress at ACHD, specifically in addressing the chronic problem of expired or unissued Clean Air Act permits, but stated that ACHD “continued to fall short of full compliance with its obligations under federal law."

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Pittsburghers hold ‘Toxic Ten Week’ to clean up region’s air pollution

PITTSBURGH -- As local officials fail to protect Pittsburghers from air pollution, local organizations and concerned citizens are kicking off "Toxic Ten Week," a campaign with daily activities meant to spur officials in Allegheny County to action.

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Statement: Environmental Protection Agency finalizes catastrophic methane rule

PITTSBURGH -- The Trump administration finalized New Source Performance Standards Thursday for oil and gas companies. The changes will allow the industry to release methane at sites across the country with little to no accountability. Methane, which is a commonly released gas during the extraction of fossil fuels, is a highly dangerous greenhouse gas that is 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

News Release | PennEnvironment

STATEMENT: As Pennsylvania’s residents and state programs face financial uncertainty during pandemic, General Assembly approve $670 million tax break to fracking and petrochemical industry

PITTSBURGH -- The Pennsylvania General Assembly today passed an eye-popping $670 million, 25-year tax break for the fracking and petrochemical industry. The proposal was quietly  amended into House Bill 732 without public input or hearing on the legislation. HB732 was originally intended to help essential volunteer emergency medical services and fire departments. The deal was negotiated behind closed doors between Gov. Wolf and Republican leaders in the General Assembly. Gov. Wolf had already vetoed similar legislation earlier this spring.

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

PennEnvironment Statement: EPA attack on mercury pollution standards puts our health at risk

PITTSBURGH -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last night finalized an attack on the Mercury Air Toxics Standards (MATS), which limit emissions of mercury and other toxics from power plants that use fossil fuels.

News Release | PennEnvironment

Statement: Gov. Wolf’s veto of tax break for fracking, single-use plastics is vital

PHILADELPHIA – Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf today vetoed a bill (HB 1100) that would give the fracking and petrochemical industries a massive tax break. The legislation would not only lead to more than $660 million in lost revenue for the commonwealth, but would also make it harder to fund important statewide priorities such as environmental protection, public health and education. 

The proposal has been met with broad opposition from environmental organizations. Nevertheless, members of the General Assembly have publicly stated their intent to try to override Gov. Wolf’s veto.

News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Statement in response to the Allegheny County Health Department hiring Dr. Debra Bogen as director

PITTSBURGH -- The Allegheny County Board of Health announced on Wednesday that it is hiring Dr. Debra Bogen, formerly a pediatrician with UPMC and Pittsburgh’s Children's Hospital, as the new director of the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD).

In response to the new hiring, Zachary Barber, PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center’s Clean Air Advocate, issued the following statement:

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