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The Environmental Protection Agency should protect the environment

The EPA has abandoned its mission to protect the environment. Current EPA Administrator and former coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler announced the suspension of all environmental law and regulation enforcement for the indefinite future. At the same time, he is rolling back clean car standards, one of the key ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Industries can now pollute our air and water without consequence, and car companies can ignore the climate crisis happening right now.

Low-income communities and communities of color bear the brunt of this neglect. Air pollution has historically been concentrated in these communities, which leads to respiratory issues and leaves residents especially vulnerable to the novel coronavirus. Rather than working to restrict pollution, the EPA is turning its back on these communities when they need help the most.

Oil and gas companies pressured the EPA to loosen regulations in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The EPA upped the ante by relinquishing all authority to protect the environment, effectively handing over control to corporations. Then the EPA’s fuel-efficiency standard was lowered from the Obama-era 4.7% annual improvement rate to just 1.5% — undercutting our strongest attempt so far to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

This is an outrage, and we cannot allow it. Add your name if you think the EPA needs to do its job and protect our environment.