Voces in Action
Latino Groups Call For Strong Mercury and Air Toxics Rule
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Latino Groups Call For Strong Mercury and Air Toxics Rule
December 16, 2011
On December 16, 2011, EPA is expected to issue critical new health safeguards against mercury and other toxic pollution spewed by coal- and oil-burning power plants that are responsible for thousands of premature deaths, heart attacks, and serious respiratory illnesses. Mercury is one of the leading causes of preventable birth defects, brain damage and serious developmental problems. This rule would be especially beneficial for the Latino community because according to the CDC, Latino children have higher levels of mercury in their bodies compared with non-Hispanic white children. Numerous Latino groups nationwide have called for a strong merucry rule to protect the close to 40% of Latinos who live within 30 miles of a power plant. Mercury is a brain poison. Mercury exposure can lead to delayed developmental milestones, delayed speech and other language problems, reduced IQ, problems with motor skills, and a laundry list of other health issues. This rule would be especially beneficial for the Latino community because according to the CDC, Latino children have higher levels of mercury in their bodies compared with non-Hispanic white children. Numerous Latino groups nationwide have called for a strong merucry rule to protect the close to 40% of Latinos who live within 30 miles of a power plant. As a Voces Verdes member, I am proud to stand in support of this rule along with the many Latino leaders and organizations (listed below)who have signed onto letters and called for true protections for children everywhere. We await the final announcement by President Obama on December 16th and call on congress to support this critical protection for our health. Dr. Elena Rios, President and CEO, National Hispanic Medical Association Rafael Fantauzzi, President and CEO, National Puerto Rican Coalition Refugio Mata, Director, Project Economic Refugee Juan Parras, Executive Director, TEJAS, Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services Mark Magana, Executive Director, National Latino Coalition on Climate Change Mildred Real, CEO, Common Ground for Conservation Arturo Carmona, Consejo de Federaciones Mexicanas en Norteamérica (COFEM) and so many others who have acted on behalf for the community.
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