People across America regularly breathe unhealthy air that increases their risk of premature death, asthma attacks and other adverse health impacts.
In 2016, 73 million Americans experienced more than 100 days of degraded air quality with the potential to harm human health. That is equal to more than three months of the year in which smog and/or particulate pollution was above the level that the EPA has determined presents “little to no risk.” Millions more people in urban and rural areas experienced less frequent but still damaging levels of air pollution.
Buses play a key role in in our nation’s transportation system, carrying millions of children daily to and from school and moving millions of Americans each day around our cities. Buses reduce the number of individual cars on our roads, make our communities more livable and sustainable, and provide transportation options for people of all ages and abilities.
America’s waterways provide us with drink-ing water, places to fish and swim, and critical habitat for wildlife – when they are clean and protected. The passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972 was a turning point in America’s efforts to protect and re-store its rivers, lakes and coastal waters. Though the Clean Water Act has made some progress bringing our waters back to health, a closer look at compli-ance with and enforcement of the law reveals an overly lenient system that too often allows pollution without accountability.
The adoption of large numbers of electric vehicles (EVs) offers many benefits for cities, including cleaner air and the opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Electric vehicles are far cleaner than gasoline-powered cars, with lower greenhouse gas emissions and lower emissions of the pollutants that contribute to smog and par- ticulate matter.
The number of EVs on America’s streets is at an all-time high. Throughout 2016, sales of plug-in electric vehicles increased nearly 38 percent. In 2017, sales of electric vehicles were up again, increasing 32 percent over the year. The introduction of the Chevy Bolt, Tesla’s Model 3 and other affordable, long-range electric vehicles suggests that growth in EV sales is just beginning. In fact, Chevrolet’s Bolt EV was named Motor Trend ’s 2017 Car of the Year.
PennEnvironment Research and Policy Center is part of The Public Interest Network, which operates and supports organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world and a strategic approach to social change.