Our environment under attack in Washington DC

The Trump administration, polluters and their allies in Congress have made their intentions clear: use their power and influence to undo decades of bipartisan environmental and public health protections.

He signed an executive order to put the Keystone XL pipeline on a fast track to construction, another order designed to eliminate Clean Water Act protections for nearly 2 million miles of America’s streams, including 49,123 miles in Pennsylvania, and a third order rolling back the Clean Power Plan, effectively allowing power plants to emit more pollution and adding more soot to the air we breathe and more climate-destabilizing carbon pollution to the planet’s atmosphere.

From attacks to weaken the Clean Water Act, to gutting new initiatives to reduce global warming pollution, to opening up our public lands and pristine wild places for harmful fracking, mining and drilling--there’s so much at risk. This includes:

  • Eliminating Clean Water Act protections for nearly 2 million miles of streams across the country and nearly 50,000 miles of streams right here in Pennsylvania; 
  • Dismantling the Obama administration’s climate legacy by pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord, attacking fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks, and rolling back the Clean Power Plan which will effectively allowing power plants to emit more pollution into the air we breathe. 
  • Putting an anti-environmental leader and climate denier, Scott Pruitt, in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and proposing to eviscerate funding for this critical environmental watchdog agency;
  • Fast-tracking the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline;

Pennsylvanians want more, not fewer, safeguards to protect  our environment, public health  and the places we love.

These efforts to dismantle our environmental protections go against the core values shared by millions of Pennsylvanians and Americans.

The vast majority of us believe the health of our children is more valuable than the dollars saved when a company dumps pollution into our air or water. The investment in clean, renewable energy is a no-brainer when it comes to the future of our children and health of the planet. And Pennsylvanians from every political walk of life has enjoyed and recreated in our state parks and forests, and Pennsylvania’s iconic treasures that are part of America’s national park system like Gettysburg and Valley Forge. We embrace the idea that some places so special--some would even say sacred--that we’ve declared them off-limits to development. This legacy of preservation is one of our proudest achievements.

But our environmental values are meaningless if we don’t stand up and defend them when they’re under attack— especially given that polluters and other entrenched special interests want to put their short-term economic interests above the health of the American people and the environment we love.

Our path forward

PennEnvironment is working to mobilize a massive movement of citizens, local elected officials, business leaders, health experts and others who will stand up against this anti-environmental onslaught from  Washington DC.  We will use this to put pressure on Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation and U.S. senators. And PennEnvironment is working with our nationwide network of state affiliates through Environment America to coordinate our efforts and go state-by-state to figure out how to deliver the votes it takes to win in Congress  in order to  protect our health, environment and the places we love.

Now, it's up to us

The leaders and activists of the past saw the result of decades of unchecked pollution in our smog-covered skylines and our toxic rivers. They worked against all odds and, ultimately, their values won the day. Our environmental forbears organized the first Earth Day, supported and passed the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act, and created the Environmental Protection Agency. Now the torch passes to us.

The children we know and love today can live cleaner, healthier lives in a greener world, but only if we can keep our environmental protections in place and make them stronger. It’s up to us.

Issue updates

News Release | Environment America

Statement: Bipartisan bill a big leap forward for America’s clean water infrastructure

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee advanced the Water Quality Protection and Job Creation Act of 2021 (H.R. 1915) on Wednesday. The bill would authorize $40 billion over five years for the Clean Water State Revolving Fund, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) program that provides communities with low-cost financing for clean water infrastructure projects. Additionally, H.R. 1915 includes provisions designed to both assist small or financially disadvantaged communities and dedicate 15 percent of the funding to state grants for green infrastructure improvements.

> Keep Reading
News Release | Environment America

Statement: Activist investors pick up third Exxon board seat

WASHINGTON -- After a surprise win last week, activist investors have picked up a third ExxonMobil board seat, according to reports. This development will provide additional leverage to press the oil giant to address growing concerns about climate change.

> Keep Reading
News Release | PennEnvironment

Poll: Northeast Pennsylvania districts represented by Reps. Wild, Cartwright, rate climate provisions of infrastructure plan highly

PHILADELPHIA – A new poll released Wednesday revealed support for President Joe Biden’s infrastructure proposal across the political spectrum in Pennsylvania’s 7th and 8th Congressional Districts. The districts, represented by Reps. Susan Wild and Matt Cartwright, respectively, encompass parts of Wayne, Pike, Lackawanna, Lehigh, and Northampton counties. Rep. Wild’s district includes Allentown, Bethlehem, and suburban and rural areas. Rep. Cartwright’s district includes Hazelton, Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, and other nearby jurisdictions. This survey, providing district-specific data on how voters view the American Jobs Plan (AJP), is sponsored by PennEnvironment, Earthjustice and Environment America.

> Keep Reading
News Release

Poll: Suburban Pittsburgh voters represented by Rep. Conor Lamb rate climate provisions of infrastructure plan highly

PITTSBURGHA new poll released Wednesday revealed support for President Joe Biden’s infrastructure proposal across the political spectrum in Pennsylvania’s 17th Congressional District. The district, represented by Rep. Conor Lamb, includes all of Beaver County and portions of Allegheny and Butler Counties. This survey, providing district-specific data on how voters view the American Jobs Plan (AJP), is sponsored by PennEnvironment, Earthjustice and Environment America. 

> Keep Reading
News Release | PennEnvironment

PennEnvironment Statement: State Senators introduce legislative package to limit harms from fracking

PITTSBURGH -- Pennsylvania lawmakers today unveiled a package of legislation to address the most egregious problems with fracking by implementing the recommendations from last year’s grand jury report. The investigation found that Pennsylvania’s leaders had “failed” to protect the public from fracking and allowed the industry to damage public health.

The specific legislation announced and highlighted at the Zoom news conference include legislation introduced by state Senator Katie Muth to require disclosure of chemicals used in fracking (SB651), air and water monitoring (SB 652), and public health response legislation (SB654); Senator Maria Collett to give jurisdiction to the Office of the Attorney General to address fracking violations (SB 655, SB 656, and SB 657); Senator John Sabatina to address the transportation of fracking waste (SB 653); and Democratic Chairwoman of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee Carolyn Comitta to increase setbacks from fracking well pads for schools and other vulnerable populations (SB650). 

> Keep Reading

Pages

View AllRSS Feed